The busiest week of conference play started with the same outcome as so many of Marshalltown Community College's men's soccer games end - with a Tiger victory.
Marshalltown overcame a slow start to take a 3-0 victory over Scott Tuesday in Iowa Community College Athletic Conference play at the J.W. Fisher Soccer Complex.
The Tigers, ranked second in the latest NJCAA national rankings, move to 10-1-1 for the season and 8-0-1 in the conference.
T-R PHOTO BY MARK PAWLAK
Marshalltown Community College freshman Stephen Peters keeps the ball away from a Scott defender as he looks for an open teammate during the Tigers’ 3-0 victory Tuesday at the J.W. Fisher Soccer Complex.
Next up for Marshalltown as it drives toward winning the regular season title and getting a first-round bye for the regional tournament is a trip to Iowa Central Thursday and a matchup at Dakota County Sunday.
The three games and six days stretch for the Tigers started sluggishly. MCC controlled play and the game was played on Scott's side of the field, but the Tigers were unable to translate that into goals.
"The first half was a little slow, we played OK, but could not put the ball in the net," said Marshalltown head coach Marcelo Serrano. "The second half we put a whole new team out there and I'm happy with the 3-0 result."
"We lost a lot of chances today and that's not good," Serrano added. "We have some things to work on before Thursday against Iowa Central."
Harvey Martinez broke the scoreless game for Marshalltown with a goal in the 28th minute with Ricardo Santos assisting. That 1-0 advantage was taken into the half by the Tigers.
Scott (3-6, 3-6) had several scoring chances in the second half on dead-ball situations, but Marshalltown's defense held strong.
The Tigers put the game away in the final minutes with its second team, which played the majority of the second half, scoring twice in the final 6 minutes.
Sam Walker pushed Marshalltown ahead 2-0 in 84th minute with the assist going to Eduardo Leite.
Aloisio Barros' score on a penalty kick in the 89th minute provided the final margin.
Goalkeeper Ken Searles recorded the shutout in net for the Tigers. Marshalltown has now outscored its opponents 53-4 this season and registered eight shutouts.
With a win Thursday against Iowa Central, the Tigers would clinch the conference title.
"It's the last part of the season and we're trying to get everyone healthy and everyone mentally ready for the playoffs," said MCC assistant coach Rafael Martinez. "We've been doing well but within a couple weeks it's the playoffs and what we've done before doesn't mean anything. If you don't perform 100 percent you may be out and not playing anymore."
After their games at Iowa Central and at Dakota County, the Tigers close out the regular season Oct. 22 as NIACC comes to J.W. Fisher. NIACC and MCC tied 1-1 earlier this season.