Mena, Arkansas – The Rich Mountain Bucks (4-2-2 overall; 1-1-2) and the Rose State Raiders (4-6 overall; 2-3) squared off on Sunday afternoon. A second half goal would deadlock the game at 1 goal apiece, but defensive mistakes and offensive turnovers for the Bucks led to a Rose State victory, 3-1.
The Bucks and Raiders would both trade shots for the first 25 minutes of the game, led by Thomas Mullen (Strabane, Ireland) with three unsuccessful shots for the Bucks. The Raiders would counter with two corner kicks but were unsuccessful. Rose State would connect on a goal after a misalignment by the Bucks defense on a throw in. The goal was by #13 Abduquadri Bolakale after the throw-in by #20 Mario Castillo. The goal awoken the Bucks offense as Josh Gounden (Durban, South Africa) would hit the cross bar on a shot, and Maurice Theart (Parklands, South Africa) would have one wide shot with two more being on goal. The Raiders' keeper, Riley Miller, would save both attempts on goal to take the lead to halftime, 1-0. Mackenzie Crerie (Brentwood, England) would receive a yellow card in the first half.
Coach Byrd made some halftime adjustments that would lead to a more aggressive offensive attack from the Bucks. Cesar Requena (Lima, Peru) led the early offensive attack with two shots. The Raiders created an offensive attack of their own; however, the Bucks would counter with attack of their own. Requena would be fouled inside the penalty area that led to a goal on the penalty kick by Maurice Theart (4th goal of the regular season). Requena would receive a yellow card shortly after. Rose State would counter the Bucks' goal. A Bucks turnover and missed defensive tackle created an opportunity when #11 Jack Jardine found the back of the net. The goal was assisted by #29 Jusung Kang. Caleb Summefield (Plymouth, England) and Thomas Mullen with both have unsuccessful shots. After #11 Jardine wasn't done yet for the Raiders. He connected again in the 82nd minutes with an assist by #8 Aidan Twohig. The goal was the result of a Bucks' turnover. The goal would lead to the final score of 3-1 in favor of Rose State. This would be the Bucks first Region II loss of the season (1-1-2 in Region II play).
In the losing effort, the Bucks would lead the game in shots with 15 total but only 7 would be on goal. The Raiders had 11 shots with 8 being on goal. Edward Garcia (De Queen, AR) would record 5 saves on the day with Riley Miller saving 4 goals for the Raiders. The Bucks had 5 corner attempts to the Raiders 4.
The men's soccer team will be back in action on Thursday, October 3rd, at 4 pm in Tonkawa, Oklahoma.