Despite having twice as many shots as their crosstown rival, the Belmont men’s soccer team fell to the Lipscomb Bison for the fourth time in a row Thursday night at Rose Park.
“We should have won,” head coach Earle Davidson said. “We were the better team from start to finish. They had one chance and one goal. We didn’t take our opportunities like we should have.”
In the 77th minute, Lipscomb true freshman Reece Holcombe came off the bench and scored his first career goal, proving to be the game-winner for the Bison in the 1-0 match.
In the first half, the Bruins controlled the ball on offense and defense. Junior midfielder Nico Olsak had several shooting opportunities from free kicks in the first half and led the team with three shots in the game.
The Bruins outshot the Bison 5-0 in the first half, but Belmont weren’t able to capitalize. “But we were good,” Davidson said. “We controlled the game and created the chances. This game just can be a bit cruel sometimes. We should have won.”
Both teams had several opportunities in the second half. Each team had a total of three shots apiece, but the Bison were the only team to take advantage when Holcombe came off the bench and then got past the Bruin defenders and keeper Lou Manning for the game-winning goal.
Throughout the match, the longtime Nashville rivals also battled physically on the pitch. The Bruins and Bison finished the match 33 fouls combined. Four yellow cards were also given by officials in the game’s final ten minutes, three of them to Belmont players.
Despite the loss, Davidson thought his team played a smart, solid soccer match against their crosstown foe.
“The guys were great. We just didn’t get the result,” he said. “The one thing I said is we need someone who can get in around the box and say ‘Hey, I’m going to do this myself. I’m going to get it done.’ But we have the guys that can do it though.”
With the loss, the Bruins fell to 3-6-1 on the season. They will return to action at Rose Park on Saturday at 6 p.m. to take on the Jacksonville Dolphins.