MORROW, Ga. – October 12, 2011 – Needing a victory the worse way possible, the Clayton State Laker men’s soccer team used every ounce of energy and then some in pulling off a thrilling 4-3 victory over visiting Georgia Southwestern on Wednesday at Laker Field.
The victory snaps a two-game losing skid for the Lakers, who improve to 8-4 overall and 3-2 in the Peach Belt Conference. Georgia Southwestern is now 3-8-1 overall and 0-4 in the Peach Belt.
At first, it appeared as though Clayton State would run away with it. The Lakers scored twice in two minutes early in the first half to take a 2-0 lead. Kenny Mena scored first in the 15th minute off a cross from Jonathan Ray, and then Matty Phillips scored on the left wing a minute later off an incoming pass from Rhys Jukes.
However, Georgia Southwestern responded with three unanswered goals.
The Hurricanes cut the lead in half on a goal by Jon-Luke Cannada in the 22nd minute off an assist by Hunter Sams. Then in the second half, Shane McKay scored twice in two minutes to give Georgia Southwestern a 3-2 lead. He tied the game on a penalty kick in the 58th minute, and then gave the Hurricanes the lead in the 60th minute with an unassisted goal off a deflection by Laker goalkeeper Brian Garcia.
But the Lakers didn’t quit. Alejandro Duque tied the game in the 65th minute with his first goal of the season off a steal. Three minutes later, Georgia Southwestern was whistled for a hand ball foul inside the penalty box. Hurricane goalkeeper Cade Jones stopped Mena’s penalty kick attempt, but the Laker junior hammered in the ricochet for what proved to be the game-winning goal for Clayton State.
Garcia recorded three saves in the victory for Clayton State, while Jones had seven saves for Georgia Southwestern. The Lakers out-shot the Hurricanes 18-10.
Clayton State plays host to UNC Pembroke on Saturday evening at 7:30 p.m. at Laker Field.