Mars Hill continues postseason run
Lions excels once again in underdog role, upset Coker
HARTSVILLE, S.C. -- Mars Hill used two first-half goals by Alex Mullen and Stephen Bivens to defeat Coker, the top seed in the Southeast Region and fifth-ranked team in the nation 2-1 in the first round of the NCAA tournament on Friday.
"This is another monumental step for the Mars Hill men's soccer program," Mars Hill head coach Ian Clerihew said. "Give all credit to Coker. They have a fantastic team and are very worthy of the No. 1 ranking in the region. We needed both goals and some timely defending late in the game to get this fantastic result."
Mullen opened the scoring in the seventh minute of the match. Mullen took a corner kick from Gregg Munn and headed the ball past Cobras' goalkeeper James Sweeney to give the the Lions the early upper hand.
Bivens scored what proved to be the match-winner in the 41st minute. Troy Chavez fed the ball into the box, and Bivens headed the ball over Sweeney's head for his third goal of the NCAA tournament.
Coker (18-3) cut the deficit in half in the 83rd minute of the match. Fernando Bedoya found the back of the net on an assist from Stephen Scrivens, but Mars Hill goalkeeper Zac Scott stoned the Cobras' rally attempt in the final seven minutes to preserve the victory.
Scott made four saves in the match. Sweeney made one save.
The fourth-seed Lions (13-5-1) advance to the Second Round to face Flagler (16-3-2), the second seed and 10th-ranked team in the country.