by Benny Benton
WILSON, N.C. – The Barton College men's soccer team fought back from an early 2-0 deficit and had opportunities to tie late in the second half, but the Bulldogs could not find the equalizer in a 2-1 Conference Carolinas loss to rival University of Mount Olive Thursday night at the Barton Outdoor Athletics Complex.
The Trojans (6-3, 2-2) jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead just 5:23 into play when junior Sebastian Loibl drilled a free kick from five yards off the left corner of the box past Barton keeper Jens Madsen Hordvik for his ninth goal of the year.
Loibl added his second strike of the contest and 10th of the season 20 minutes later, dribbling through two defenders on the left wing and firing a shot inside the near post to increase the UMO advantage to 2-0.
Barton (2-8, 0-5) got back into the match in the 37th minute on junior Daniel Gregory's first career goal. Freshman Ruben Mancio started the play with a shot from the left wing that was deflected by Mount Olive keeper Preston Snyder. Gregory ended up with the rebound inside the right post and put the shot away to cut BC's deficit to 2-1.
The Bulldogs had two good chances to tie in the second half, the first in the 69th minute. Off of a free kick, Tyler Dew produced a header that was knocked down but not corralled by Snyder. Alex Blake delivered a follow-up shot, but it was stopped by Snyder.
In one of Barton's last offensive pushes with less than five minutes to play, freshman Pol Monells worked free for an attempt off the right post, but it was again smothered by Snyder, who had seven saves on the night.
Mount Olive had a number of chances as well, producing 16 total shots on the night, 10 of them on goal. However, Hordvik recorded eight saves, his fifth match this season with eight or more.
The contest between rivals was a physical affair, with 38 fouls called – 19 for each side – and 10 yellow cards handed out – five for each team.
The Bulldogs will host Erskine College in another Conference Carolinas affair Saturday at 4 p.m..