Coastal Carolina Wins Sun Belt Men’s Soccer Championship
CONWAY, S.C. - Host and No. 1 seed Coastal Carolina entered the 2017 Sun Belt Men’s Soccer Championship as the favorite to win and delivered a championship performance Sunday afternoon on their home field in front of their fans on Sunday afternoon.
No. 2 seed Georgia State didn’t make things easy for the Chanticleers as the teams tussled back-and-forth for the majority of the first half as each tried to establish rhythm.
A Coastal corner kick turned into the first points of the match as Miguel Gutierrez put a ball into the box in the 31st minute. After ricocheting off a GSU player, Saif AlHameli hammered a top right effort that was too strong for Luke Oesterle to reach.
Romario Piggott nearly gave Coastal a two-goal advantage in the 64th minute with a touch off his head, but Oesterle tipped the ball over the goal.
Sun Belt Championship Most Outstanding Player Frantzdy Pierrot had a breakaway in the 86th minute that drew Oesterle out of position. Pierrot then unselfishly slipped the ball to Martin Melchor as he then converted to push the tally to 2-0. The score would hold and the fans at Coastal Carolina Stadium erupted and stayed jubilant through the final seconds of the match.
It was the second consecutive Sun Belt Men’s Soccer Championship for the Chanticleers as they have now won both tournament titles since joining the league last season.
Coastal advances to the 2017 NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship with the win. The complete bracket will be announced on Monday. A field of 48 teams compete in the single elimination tournament.
2017 Sun Belt Men’s Soccer All-Tournament Team
Carlos Caro, Howard, Goalkeeper
Kyle Celestine, Howard, Forward
Javier Carbonell, Georgia Southern, Midfielder
Blake Wilson, Georgia Southern, Forward
Rashid Alarape, Georgia State, Midfielder
Hannes Burmeister, Georgia State, Midfielder
Lukas Joyner, Georgia State, Defender
Saif AlHameli, Coastal Carolina, Midfielder
Miguel Gutierrez, Coastal Carolina, Defender
Braulio Linares-Ortiz, Coastal Carolina, Goalkeeper
Kervin Kenton Fadel, Coastal Carolina, Defender
Most Outstanding Player: Frantzdy Pierrot, Coastal Carolina, Forward