MANSFIELD, CT – The fourth-seeded Western Connecticut State University men's soccer team suffered a 5-0 loss at top-seeded archrival Eastern Connecticut in the Little East Conference tournament semifinal round on Friday night at Rick McCarthy Field. With the loss, the Colonials' season came to a close at 13-5-3 while the Warriors improved to 17-2 and will meet either No. 2 Keene State or No. 3 Rhode Island College in the championship game on Sunday.
After being outshot 30-4 in a 1-0 win at WestConn on October 16, Eastern controlled play from the outset Friday. Six different players contributed to the team's scoring, with senior forward Griffin Luczek (Lee, NH) giving Eastern the lead in the 20th minute, and later capping the scoring by finishing off junior forward Danny Shayler's (Avon) feed with 50.1 second left to seal the victory.
"I'm obviously disappointed with tonights result," said WestConn head coach Joe Mingachos following the action. "We played hard for most of the season but we just didn't match Eastern's effort today and it showed on the scoreboard," he concluded.
Making his first career playoff start, Eastern junior keeper Kyle Boutot (Tolland) made four saves, matching WestConn junior keeper Daniel Szabo (Trumbull). Boutot had a relatively easy evening, thanks to a defense that limited the Colonials to just ten shots – four of them on goal.
Each team had an opportunity to score first with free kicks in the first five minutes, but WestConn junior midfielder Matthew Restrepo (Bridgeport) hammered his shot from the edge of the box into the wall, and Eastern senior midfielder Jackson Toomey (Willington) sent a drive over the top of the net off a free kick by freshman midfielder Andres Mayuri (West Hartford).
Minutes before Luczek's opening goal, Agyemang threated twice, with his bullet through the WestConn defense directed right at Szabo, and Szabo following with his best save in a 1v1 situation with Agyemang from close range.
WestConn brought a six-game unbeaten streak (3-0-3) into Friday's semifinals, where it had allowed only three goals in that stretch, and was 7-2-1 away from home in 2019.