Gulf South Conference tournament

Gulf South Conference tournament

Photo by Sam Anderson

The Flames men's soccer team exited the Gulf South Conference [GSC] tournament in the first round after falling 3-2 at home against West Florida on Tuesday night Nov. 3.

After falling behind 2-0 by the 12th minute, the Flames answered in the 35th minute with a goal from junior David Perez.

Perez was given the GSC Player of the Year award earlier this week. He led the GSC in regular season goals with 15.

Perez said his personal accolades do nothing to help with the disappointment that comes with losing.

'It's always nice to score goals and that type of stuff,' Perez said. '[But] my ultimate goal every game is to win, no matter who scores.'

West Florida responded by scoring on a penalty kick less than a minute later.

The Flames were down 3-1 going into the half.

Perez scored his and the Flames' second goal of the night in the 82nd minute.

Despite having eight shot attempts in the second half alone, and holding West Florida scoreless for the half, the Flames were unable to tie the game before time ran out.

Senior Jon Finlay said the effort from the Flames in this game speaks to the type of team they are.

'We have a never say die attitude,' Finlay said. 'I think you look at how many chances we created, we know we can score goals.'

With the first round loss in the GSC tournament, for the Flames to qualify for the NCAA tournament, Lynn and Rollins University would both have to lose their upcoming matches. Even with those losses, there is no guarantee that the Flames will be selected to participate in the NCAA tournament.

However, the Flames will compete in the National Christian College Association [NCCAA], should they not be selected for the NCAA tournament.

Junior Quade Marinell said it is important for the team to remain confident despite the loss.

'Obviously we would have liked to have gone to the NCAA National Tournament, and we are disappointed, but we have to keep our heads held high, because up to this point we've had an unbelievable season,' Marinell said. 'There were some downs to this season, but the highs outweigh the downs, majorly ' We just have to go out each and every game and play every minute knowing that we can beat the other team.'

Finlay said the ultimate goal is to bring another NCCAA Championship to Lee.

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