KINGS POINT, N.Y. – Freshman midfielder Abboss Rezaie scored in the 85th minute to cap a second-half rally for Kings Point, which recorded a 2-1 men's college soccer win over archrival Coast Guard on Saturday.
Rezaie (Plano, Texas), who came on as a substitute only a minute prior, latched onto a through ball from junior midfielder Ryan Silveira (Katy, Texas) before he dribbled through the left side of the Coast Guard defense and unleashed a shot past goalkeeper Will Leffler to break a 1-1 deadlock at Tomb Field.
The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (3-1) hasn't lost to Coast Guard (2-1) in the annual soccer battle since 1999.
"This game means a great deal to Rear Admiral [Phil] Greene, our team, the academy and all our alums," Smolens said. " We're proud to do our part and start off the Superintendent's Trophy series with a win that other teams at Kings Point can build upon. A physical and emotional contest like this one can help our team prepare for challenging matches which lie ahead."
Those emotions seemed to get in the way of the Mariners' performance in the opening 45 minutes.
"As with many Kings Point-Coast Guard contests, with the emotions so high for both teams it often makes the game more of a physical battle than a technical contest," Smolens said. "This was the case today and it made it more difficult for us to control the ball and play to feet. "
Coast Guard, which outplayed the hosts in the first half, found the back of the net first as substitute Matthew Bogdan headed home a corner kick past junior keeper Garrett Reinert (Houston, Texas) in the 27th minute .
The Mariners came out stronger in the second half and started to play more of a possession game. After a Coast Guard foul, senior left fullback Hollis Irvine ((Greenwich, N.J.) converted his second free kick of the season as he sent a swerving, 25-yard spot kick from the right side into the far post for a 1-1 tie.
Kings Point junior midfielder Kurt Olsen (Charlotte, N.C.) received a red card in the 89th minute.
Leffler made five saves, while Reinert had three.
The Mariners host Farmingdale State at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.