Eastern Conn. Beats Bears 1-0

WILLIMANTIC, CONN.--(10/18/11)--Junior forward Matt Furman scored his 11th career game-winning goal 12 minutes into the second half to carry Eastern Connecticut State University to a 1-0 non-conference verdict over the U.S. Coast Guard Academy at Thomas Nevers Field.

With its third straight win over Coast Guard (4-8-1), Eastern (10-4-1) has now won as many as ten matches in a season for five consecutive seasons under fifth-year head coach Greg DeVito for the first time in the program's 51-year history.

Furman's team-leading seventh goal and 23rd of his career was set up by senior back Matt Esposito and junior midfielder Cory Tobler. Furman worked a give-and-go with Tober who layed the ball off on the right side to Esposito, who found Furman near the top of the box for a return pass. Furman settled the pass and fired a high, hard shot inside the right post.

In posting its tenth shutout in 15 outings this year, Eastern's defense held Coast Guard without a shot until just 1:20 remained in the first half and without a corner kick through the first 74 minutes.

Making his first start of the season, junior Jordan Munsell recorded his second shutout in four career starts. His only save came with 10:25 left, when he left his feet at the right post to smother a low hard shot by sophomore Sam Zogran-Werness. Coast Guard's reserves took all three of the team's shots.

Furman, Tobler and senior back Aaron Smiles all made bids to break the first-half deadlock, but Coast Guard junior keeper Will Leffler made two of his four first-half saves on those plays. Sixteen minutes into play, Tobler shot in the box sailed wide; with ten minutes left, Smiles ripped a free kick through traffic but right at the keeper; and with four minutes left, Furman split two defenders after collecting the ball on a long serve, but was unable to gather himself and his slow roller was fielded easily by Leffler.

Seven minutes after Furman's goal, Eastern sophomore midfielder Luke Capezzone took a pass from Tobler on the left side but his attempt to double Easetrn's lead bounded inches wide of the right post.

Coast Guard, in the midst of a brutal stretch in which the Bears play seven of eight games on the road, are 0-6-1 in their last seven and play the eighth and final game in that stretch at Conn. College on Saturday. Four of those six losses are by one goal.