HARROGATE, Tenn. --- Victor Peres scored a goal and added an assist as Lincoln Memorial University defeated Tusculum University 2-1 in South Atlantic Conference men's soccer action Wednesday afternoon.
Peres, who took over the conference lead in points (21) and moved into a tie for the SAC lead in goals with nine, assisted on a goal by Julio Neto late in the first half, then scored from close range in the 61st minute for the Railsplitters (7-3-2, 4-2-1 SAC), who won for the fourth time in their last five matches.
Ayuk Tambe scored his team-high sixth goal of the season in the 67th minute for the Pioneers (6-6-1 overall, 4-3-1 SAC) in a match that saw the teams finish with exactly eight shot attempts and four shots on goal apiece.
The Lincoln Memorial defense held Tusculum to one shot attempt in the first half, a try in the 18th minute by Edgar Cervantes that was blocked by the defense. Pioneer keeper Alejandro Quiriti made a pair of saves in the first half, denying Felipe de Sousa in the 23rd minute and stopping Danilo Seglio in the 25th minute.
The Railsplitters broke through at 38:40 as Neto worked a give-and-go with Peres, with Neto beating Quiriti for his first goal of the season. That would be the final shot attempt for either team in the half, as Lincoln Memorial nursed the 1-0 advantage into intermission.
The Pioneers put their first shot on goal in the 49th minute, but LMU keeper Caleb Cothrin made the save on the attempt from Dario Ljubic. Henrique Devens had a chance in the 59th minute off a Pioneer corner kick, but sent his try high of the target.
Peres extended the LMU lead to 2-0 at 60:02 as a loose ball in the box came from Edwin Vaas, with Peres finishing for his ninth goal of the year and a 2-0 Railsplitters lead.
Tusculum came back at 66:15 as Clement Dagorn set up Tambe for a shot that lobbed over Cothrin and into the LMU net. The Pioneers kept up the pressure and put two shots on goal in the 79th minute, but Cothrin was able to deny both Tambe and Shawn Foster in rapid succession.
Lincoln Memorial took its final shot with just under 10 minutes remaining, then relied on a defense that kept Tusculum from threatening other than a shot from Jonny Winter that went high with just under seven minutes to play.
Quiriti finished with two saves in goal for the Pioneers, while Cothrin was credited with three saves for the Railsplitters. The Pioneers were called for 16 fouls to 15 by the Railsplitters, while Lincoln Memorial had a 6-2 edge in corner kicks.
Tusculum will celebrate Senior Day on Saturday when Mars Hill visits Pioneer Field for a 4:30 p.m. start.