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Hector Nieto
Hector Nieto had the game winning goal for the Bears.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Soccer Downs Coker

Making their first appearance at home in two and a half weeks, the Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Soccer Team defended their own pitch with a 3-1 victory over Coker.

The Bears tallied their best offensive performance at home this season and each goal was recorded by a unique goal scorer.

Ivan Rubio netted another mid-week goal in the opening 15 minutes to give the Bears the early lead. Meanwhile, in the second half, Hector Nieto and Arnau Olle drilled in goals of their own to cement the victory.

LR is currently enjoying their best stretch of the season with seven points out of a possible nine in their last three matches. With the result, the Bears now improve to double figures with 12 points and sit just one point outside the top four in the SAC Men’s Soccer standings.

Nieto scored his first career goal in the 68th minute. The freshman had the second-most shots on the team (12) heading into the match. Rubio has scored a goal in three consecutive weeks. The graduate student has now surpassed his point total in 2022 (5) compared to his 2023 season (7).

Both teams each had 10 corner kicks in the match. In the second half, the Bears had seven corner kicks while the Cobras had six of their own.

Not only was the Bears’ three-goal night the best performance at home this season, but their 17 shots were also the most in a single game at home this year. Despite the great night on the scoresheet, the Bears committed their most fouls in a single match with 20.

Lenoir-Rhyne leads the all-time series, 15-5-3. The Bears improve their home record against the Cobras to a 9-2-2 mark. Despite dropping a match to the Cobras in 2022, the Bears have won four of the last five meetings.

After losing their home opener to Nova Southeastern, LR has gone unbeaten at home in their last three matches. By reaching double figures in points with 12, it is now 15 straight seasons the Bears have recorded at least 10 points.

The Bears improve their record to 3-4-4 overall, 3-2-3 in the South Atlantic Conference. The Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Soccer Team will go back on the road for its final non-conference match of the season against Chowan. The Bears will look to win in Murfreesboro, N.C. for the first time since Sept. 27, 2008.