Minutemen Cruise Past Birmingham Southern
Sept. 5, 2003
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The University of Massachusetts' men's soccer team cruised to a 5-0 victory in the opening round of the La Quinta Classic, hosted by the University of Alabama-Birmingham. The win evens UMass' record to 1-1-0 overall, heading into Sunday's match-up with No. 13-ranked UAB.
UMass wasted no time getting on the board, as Oral Bullen (Brooklyn, N.Y.) found the back of the net with a low shot from in close that slid under the BSC goalie for a 1-0 advantage just 7:19 into the game. Dan Colwell (Norwell, Mass.) assisted on the goal. UMass added to the lead just over 13 minutes later when Ernie Billittier (Mundelein, Ill.) received the ball off a deflection and fired a rocket past the goalie for a 2-0 lead in the 21st minute. Gabe Barnard (Williamsburg, Mass.) tallied his first goal of the season in the 39th minute when he slipped a shot through traffic that beat the BSC goalie to the right post for a 3-0 halftime lead. Ralph Pace (Richmond, Va.) assisted on the goal.
The Minutemen stretched their lead to 4-0 at the 87:57 mark with senior captain Ptah Myers (Columbus, Ohio) notched his first goal of the season. UMass then closed out the scoring when Bullen streaked down the right side and fired a shot from in close at the 88:18 mark for a 5-0 opening-round victory.
The UMass defense stood strong as Colin Burns (Newark, Del.) and Nick Billman (St. Louis, Mo.) combined for the shutout. Burns made one stop in the first half and Billman tallied three in the second half, as UMass outshot the Panthers, 15-13. The Minutemen also recorded eight corner kicks to BSC's one.
The Minutemen will battle #13-ranked Alabama-Birmingham in the title game at 2:30 EST on Sunday, Sept. 7.