Last night the Daytona State College Men's Soccer team (now 7-1-1 on the season) defeated Region 8 rival Eastern Florida State College 1-0 with only 1 minute left in regulation time. This win put the Falcons at a record of 4-3-1 in the three-year series with Eastern Florida.
"You get nothing easy when playing the Titans," is what Head Coach Bart Sasnett told his team prior to the match. "You have to work until there is nothing left and make sure everything that you do is perfect."
And he was right. For 89 minutes, the game was scoreless, with both teams battling it out on the pitch. Shot after shot, foul after foul, the game was about as intense as a college soccer match can get.
"It was a very high level game," says head coach Bart Sasnett. "It was a non-stop effort on both sides of the ball. This Region 8 matchup has turned into one of the NJCAAs premier rivalry games. The team with the least amount of mistakes is usually the one who comes out on top."
The Titans of Eastern Florida State had a few chances in the first half, one of which hit the crossbar and others being stopped by Falcons goalkeeper Carlos Melendez, who had an incredible match.
"Carlos kept us in the game on multiple occasions," says Sasnett. "He came up huge for us and his presence was noticed in the box."
The Falcons had a few chances of their own in the first half but none could seem to find the back of the net.
Coming out in the second half, both teams had something to prove. It was a battle for every 50/50 ball, every shot, and every free kick. There wasn't a minute of the game where either team was resting. Just as the clock seemed to be winding down and the Falcons were looking at another potential overtime, freshman Pablo Vargas won the ball in the middle of the pitch and slotted a pass to sophomore and Region 8 leading goal scorer Creggton Charlton. Charlton pushed his way through two Titan defenders and knocked the ball passed the keeper, hitting it off the post and into the back of the net, scoring in the final minute of the match.
"Creggton can be a lethal force when he is on. He can take over a game in an instant and tonight was one of those nights. Credit to him and our other leaders on the team, they came out in the second half with a chip on their shoulder."
Charlton's goal held for the remainder of the match, and the Falcons walked out of the Titan Soccer Complex victorious with a score of 1-0.
"I am very pleased with how we played tonight," said Sasnett. "They came after us wave after wave, but we persevered and got the outcome. We stuck to our game plan and played our style of soccer and it paid off. Credit to Eastern Florida, they are a very good team with a lot of talent. They have a great coach and they will bounce back from this and be ready for our next matchup."
The Falcons travel to Cuthbert, Georgia, to face Andrew College on Sunday the 23rd for their next match.