COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – No. 8 Franklin & Marshall overcame an early one-goal deficit with a pair of scores in the second half to maintain its undefeated Centennial Conference mark and hand Ursinus a 2-1 defeat on Tuesday evening in men's soccer action. The Diplomats improved to 9-0-1, 3-0 CC, while the Bears dropped to 3-6-1, 0-3 CC.
Ursinus came out firing early in the first, capitalizing on a corner opportunity in the 10th minute to pull in front by a 1-0 score. Despite outshooting the Bears by a 7-4 margin in the opening stanza and controlling possession throughout, the Diplomats were unable to get behind the Ursinus' defense and entered the break down one.
The F&M offense took matters into its own hands in the second half, changing the tempo of the contest from the onset of the frame. Transiting to a more direct and aggressive style of play, the Diplomats took advantage of one of their greatest strengths off the bench; their size.
Ben Wild entered the fold as a forward, switching from defender for the first time in his career for a short-handed F&M team, and winning a high ball in the box in the 49th minute. The scramble was deflected out to a waiting Devon Malfitano, who buried his second goal in as many games to even the match at 1-1.
The Diplomats continued to battle on offense, opening up the game and putting continuous pressure on a Bears team that was now playing on their heels. In the 57th minute, Jared Bomba was ripped down in the box after a terrific offensive move. On the ensuing penalty kick, Same Lane netted the opportunity to hand F&M the 2-1 victory.
For the game, the Diplomats led on shots at 15-9 and corners at 8-3. Bomba registered five shots through 90 minutes, followed by three from Lane and a pair from Chris Scott.
Goalkeeper Trevor Britton (9-0-1) recorded three saves for the win, while Ursinus' Brian Gately (3-4-1) allowed both goals and stopped four shots for the loss.
F&M returns to action against Muhlenberg on Friday when the Diplomats host the Mules at Tylus Field for a 4:00 p.m. game.