(Smithfield, RI) – Marcello Castro (Panana, Brazil) and Justin Brewer (Somers, CT) scored second-half goals, as the Sacred Heart Pioneer Men's Soccer team claimed a share of the Northeast Conference regular season title with a 2-1 come-from-behind win against the Bryant Bulldogs Sunday afternoon. SHU closed out the regular season with a nine-game unbeaten streak, and earned the number one seed in next weekend's NEC Men's Soccer Tournament.
Nicholas Parisi gave Bryant an early lead with an unassisted goal in the 32nd minute, and the Bulldogs took that lead into the half. However, Castro scored his team-leading sixth goal of the year to tie it in the 49th minute on a cross from Brewer that he volleyed in the left side.
Brewer scored the game winning goal 30 seconds after Alex Fait (Ottawa, ON) made his only save on Bryant's Eddy Curry in the 78th minute. Omer Levy (Yahud, Israel) sent a pass from the left side through the box that found Brewer, who scored his fifth goal of the year to propel the Pioneers with one of their biggest goals of the season. Brewer has now scored in three straight games, including the game-winning goals in the past two.
SHU needed the win in the regular season finale to simply make the NEC Tournament, as a tie on Sunday would have left them out by virtue of a tie-breaker with St. Francis (PA) in the tightly-packed NEC playoff chase. However, not only did the Pioneers qualify thanks to the win, but they earned the top seed in the tournament by virtue of tie-breakers with co-regular season champions Monmouth and CCSU.
Check back on sacredheartpioneers.com this week for information on game time and location for Sacred Heart's semifinal match with Fairleigh Dickenson on Friday, November 11.