Belmont Vision – Men’s football start conference game on winning streak with overnight alumni win

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The men’s soccer team made program history with four straight home wins, claiming a 1-0 home win over East Tennessee University in the Bruins’ opener in the Southern Conference on Saturday.

Coming undefeated in their last five games, including a 1-1 draw against No.22 rival Lipscomb University, the Bruins are showing confidence and consistency in their season so far.

“We talk all the time about building good habits and breaking bad ones and the reality is that winning is a habit,” said Belmont head coach David Costa. “Seeing the fruits of your labor is very important. ”

Second-year star AJ Chastonay scored his second goal of the season to put the Bruins ahead midway through the second half. The service was provided by senior Jack Shaw, who recorded his second assist of the season.

“AJ’s move into the box is among the best of any player I’ve played with,” said Shaw. “He has very intelligent movements, so it makes my job easier. “

In the opening minutes of the match, ETSU pushed Belmont to the back of his box after a quick corner concession. The Bruins’ defensive line didn’t let that initial pressure put them in phase, as they maintained their form effectively and took out air threats.

The first real scoring opportunity of the game came from Belmont forward Liam O’Brien in the 20th minute, forcing a superb save from Bucs goalkeeper Josh Perryman.

Moments later, Perryman was called back to action, making two more saves after the efforts of Bruins John Bannec and Chastonay.

It was also a busy first half for Bruin goaltender Drew Romig, who kept his cool and saved all four shots on goal in the first 45 minutes.

The first half ended without either team being able to break the deadlock 0-0.

To raise the stakes, the Belmont team also found itself in the presence of a few distinguished visitors.

During the halftime break, more than 30 Belmont men’s soccer alumni took to the field to receive a moment of recognition for their contribution to the program.

“It’s always great to have people reconnecting with the program. We brought an alum into the Hall of Fame – Jay Ayers, Thursday night, ”said Costa.

The second half opener looked a lot like the first, with early pressure from the ETSU, but it was Belmont who struck first.

After making good use of the gap, the Bruins’ perseverance was rewarded in the 72nd minute. Esteban Lestido played the ball off to Shaw, who swung the cross into the box to find Chastonay in the right place to put it into the net.

Belmont’s defense maintained fantastic form, limiting ESTU to just three shots in the second half, all of which were greeted by the safe hands of Romig. The Bruin goaltender’s imposing performance was rewarded with a career-high shutout and seven saves.

Shaw expressed his enthusiasm for launching the conference game with a clinical victory.

“So great to start with a win,” Shaw said. “I think at home we are a very difficult team to beat. We’re very proud of it so we’re performing well and hopefully we can keep him on the road. “

With four straight home wins under their belt and a full week to train and recover, the Bruins will continue to test their winning habits when they play at Furman University on September 25.

PHOTO: SoCon Offensive Player of the Week 17th Liam O’Brien alongside game lone scorer 16th AJ Chastonay. Belmont Vision / Nikiah Perry

This article was written by Finn Birnie and AJ Wuest.

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