Redshirt sophomore Bismark Agyeman scored early in the second half, lifting the Bowling Green State University men's soccer team to a 1-0 win over Northern Illinois University Saturday night (Oct. 22). The Mid-American Conference match was held at the NIU Soccer Complex.
With the win the Falcons improve to 9-4-2 overall, and BGSU is now 2-0-1 in MAC play. Bowling Green moves into first place in the conference standings. The Falcons were picked to finish fifth in the six-team league, according to the preseason coaches' poll.
COMPLETE RELEASE, STATS, ETC.
BG has doubled last season's MAC win total. The Falcons are unbeaten through three conference contest for the first time in two decades, since the 1996 team went a perfect 5-0-0 in league play.
Agyeman's goal was the first of his collegiate career, and -- obviously -- his first game-winning goal as a Falcon. He becomes the 11th different Falcon to score a goal this season.
The Falcons have won nine matches this season, tying the total for all of last year. And, nine different BGSU players have scored one game-winning goal this year, matching the school record. The 1997 team also saw nine Falcons score a GWG.
Sophomore Tate Robertson drew the assist on Agyeman's goal. Robertson played a deep cross from the right side, finding Agyeman at the far post. Agyeman, near the six-yard line, tucked the ball past NIU goalkeeper Drew Donnally for what would prove to be the winning goal.
Agyeman now has four points this season and nine in his BGSU career. The assist was Robertson's second of the fall.
"It was a different type of game tonight," said BGSU head coach Eric Nichols. "We definitely saw some different types of challenges tonight, and we kind of had to change our style a little bit.
"We showed a lot of resilience to come here to NIU and get a win. Conference games are so difficult, so challenging. The fact that we were able to get points, particularly on the road, is huge. It puts us in a good spot heading into our last two MAC games."
NIU had a 13-11 advantage in total shot attempts on Saturday, but the Falcons had six shots on goal to the Huskies' two. Freshman goalkeeper Anthony Mwembia made two saves in goal as he and the Falcons kept the seventh clean sheet of the season. At the other end of the pitch, Donnally made five stops for the hosts.
BGSU now steps outside of MAC play for one final time in 2016, returning to the road for a Tuesday (Oct. 25) contest vs. Fort Wayne. Then, the Brown and Orange will face the other two teams currently in the top three in the MAC standings. BG will host Akron on Saturday night (Oct. 29), with kickoff scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at Cochrane Stadium. The Falcons then close the regular season with a home match against Buffalo on Saturday, Nov. 5.
BGSU MEN'S SOCCER - REMAINING REGULAR-SEASON MATCHES
Tue., Oct. 25 – at Fort Wayne, 7:00
Sat., Oct. 29 – AKRON, 7:00 *
Sat., Nov. 5 – BUFFALO, 7:00 *
* MAC match