10.02.12: The CCRI Knights’ men's soccer team traveled to Dean College in Franklin, MA to play the No. 17 ranked (NJCAA DI poll) Bulldogs of Dean College in a Region XXI conference showdown. The Knights defeated the Bulldogs 1-0. With the victory the Knights improve to 4-5 on the season and 4-1 in Region XXI play and 1-1 in its division.
The Knights were ready to make up for the poor game they had over the weekend. Head Coach Gabe Toro moved the lineup around again because of key injuries on the team. Co-Captain Chris Munoz (Talcahuano, Chile) and Kyle Ferreira (Westerly, RI) anchored the back line. Ian Duncan (Barrington, RI) and Marvin Gutierrez (Central Falls, RI) covered them on the wings. The injury bug struck again for the Knights just 15 minutes into the game as Chris Munoz went down with a nagging injury that continues to bother him. Cortez was replaced by Preston Kar (Providence, RI). The defensive front did an excellent job for 90 minutes.
Goalkeeper Derek Soares (Pawtucket, RI) got the start in net and made some clutch saves to keep the Knights pushing forward. Coach Toro commented “The coaching staff and I worked with the team on keeping the ball and using each other to move up the pitch. The players were able to have more combination play making each other more dangerous and elusive. By keeping the ball we were able to design more effective plays and play more with a purpose.” The game was hard fought with neither team budging until about 12 minutes left in the game when the Knights were able to open up the offense. Servi Barrientos (Providence, RI) played a curling ball into the six yard box and Freddie Korsah (Accra, Ghana) dove onto the wet ground to head the ball past the Dean goalkeeper giving the Knights a 1-0 lead, a lead they would not relinquish. Korsah had two more chances to score in the next five minutes but was unlucky. Korsah is normally a defender but the coaching staff has converted him into a forward due to defensive depth of the Knights and to capitalize on his athleticism. He has certainly stepped-up to his new role. After the exciting go-ahead goal Korsah and his teammates enjoyed the celebration on the sideline as he was tackled by all the entire Knights team. The Knights went on to win the game 1-0.
Coach Toro commented “I was very happy with the team's mind set this game. The celebration of the goal was perfect because it included all the players, something I said to them at the start of the game: ‘we were going to need everyone to win.’ All the players on the team contributed to this win, starting on the practice pitch and executing what they rehearsed before the game. All players continue to push each other during practices resulting in individual improvement, which ultimately leads to overall team performance.”
The Knights look to continue this momentum into their next game when they will travel to Springfield, Ma on Thursday to play the Rams of Springfield Technical Community College at 4:00pm.
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls 17,760 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.