NEW ROCHELLE, NY – The Iona College men's soccer program had its home-opener spoiled by La Salle on Saturday afternoon. Surviving a late goal by sophomore Lenworth Lopez, the Explores defeated the Gaels, 2-1.
Pat McCarthy gave La Salle the lead in the 7' with his first goal of the season. Ike Hollinger fluttered a cross into the box that passed by an Iona defender and eventually found the right foot of McCarthy. The Explorers took a 2-0 lead in the 62' when Soji Olatoye knocked home a loose ball off a rebounded header. It was McCarthy who had the original chance to score but his attempt went off the crossbar and landed by his teammate's foot.
The Gaels scored in the 86' to make it a one-goal deficit down the final stretch. Senior Anthony Gomez, who assisted on Iona's score, came in off the bench with Lopez and both supplied energy upon their entrance in the 71'.
Sophomore Josh Plimpton, who was the hero with the game-winning goal in Iona's last game against Binghamton, set up what was nearly the game-tying goal in the 89'. Gomez created space and fed a pass to the right side of the penalty box where Plimpton was planted. He then one-touched a perfect layoff to senior Killian Colombie. The Paris, France native rocketed one toward the right upper corner and came just inches away from scoring until La Salle keeper Cameron Keys got a hand on it to deflect it just past the right post.
Iona outshot La Salle in the game 14-9 and 10-4 in the second half. Gomez, freshman Esad Mackic, Colombie, senior Humbert Ferrer and Lopez combined for five shots over the final 12 minutes. The Gaels had six corner kicks in the second half and ended up with four more than the Explorers.
The Maroon & Gold's next game is against St. Francis Brooklyn on Saturday, Sept. 8. Kickoff is scheduled for 3 PM.
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