The Berry men’s soccer team can now unpack their bags.

In what was an truly challenging start to the fall season, the Vikings closed out their seventh straight road clash on a positive note Sunday afternoon in Fayetteville, N.C., when they handed non-conference foe Methodist a 3-0 defeat.

The win improves the team to 5-2 overall heading into its first home game of the year on Saturday when the Vikings host Sewanee at Pearson Field in a noon kick-off in their first Southern Athletic Conference showdown of the season.

On Sunday, Methodist struck first scoring just over 23 minutes into the game, only to see the Vikings quickly respond less than a minute later when Mason Hemstreet scored his first goal of the year off an assist by Nathan Carlson.

Berry broke the halftime deadlock five minutes into the second half when JP Phillips found the range off a pass from Carlson, and at the 80:55 mark Tracy Moon added an insurance goal thanks to an assist by T.J. Tracy to close out the scoring.

The Vikings finished the day with 10 accurate shots, with right of them on goal.

In other recent local college sports news:

SOCCER

Hawks drop two to open conference play

The Shorter Hawks battled back three times from a one-goal deficit but ultimately fell in overtime 4-3 to NCAA DII 9th ranked Union University Sunday afternoon on Ben Brady Field.

The Hawks (2-3) fell behind in the 13th minute before sophomore Mattia Maiello fired home a blast from 15 yards to knot the game at one.

Union regained the lead early in the second period but this time it was Jackson Wheatley who would equalize to make it 2-2. Wheatley’s penalty kick came about when Maiello was taken down in the box in the 54th minute.

Union answered 6 minutes later to make it 3-2 before the Hawks battled back a third time with Maiello scoring his second goal of the day off a cross from Bailey Lopez.

But it was Union’s Gavin Scott scoring his third goal of the day 2 minutes into the second overtime for the final 4-3 Hawk heart breaker.

Freshman Colby Strickland had four saves in his first collegiate start in goal for the Hawks while Union’s Botund Nemeth recorded five.

Friday night the Hawks fell to Christian Brothers University as Nicho Marin scored his first collegiate goal on an Emmanuel Alerte assist in an 8-1 defeat.

The Hawks head to Mississippi to take on Delta State and Mississippi College this upcoming weekend.

Lady Hawks fall to Union

The Lady Hawks were at home for a contest against the Lady Bulldogs of Union University. In a rainy low scoring contest, one goal was all that the Lady Bulldogs needed to secure the win.

The lone goal of the game was scored in the 32nd minute by Annika Weidner. Union had seven shots on goal compared to Shorter’s one. Union also committed 12 fouls compared to Shorter’s five.

Taylor Crawford recorded the lone shot on goal for the Lady Hawks. Erin Carter, Rue Campbell, Maggie Dattilo, and Lindsey Shipp all recorded one shot. Morgan Cashen recorded five saves in her first start in goal due to injuries at the goalkeeper position.

The Lady Hawks will be back in action on the road at Delta State University on Friday September 24th at 2 p.m.

VOLLEYBALL

Shorter wins two at Lee Invitational

The Shorter volleyball team played two matches on Friday afternoon at the Lee Invitational at Lee University. Shorter defeated King University 3-1 and then defeated Kentucky State University 3-0.

After Friday’s matches, Shorter is now 6-4 on the season.

Shorter vs. King (Shorter wins, 3-1)

The Lady Hawks fell 25-22 in the first set, but came back and defeated King 25-19 in the second set, 25-17 in the third set and 25-20 in the fourth set.

Lacee Glover led the way for the Lady Hawks offensively in the first match and had 17 kills. Annie Smith had 20 assists for Shorter. Madison Sprosty added in 15 digs while Reilly Swierbut added in 14 and Taryn Cycholl added in 13.

As a team, Shorter had 48 kills, 14 aces, six block, 45 assists and 63 digs.

King overall had 34 kills, nine aces, seven blocks, 33 assists and 56 digs.

Shorter vs. Kentucky State (Shorter wins, 3-0)

Shorter defeated Kentucky State 25-6 in the first set, 25-13 in the second set and 25-15 in the third set.

Casey Raschen and Katherine Patrick led the way for Shorter offensively each with six kills. Glover had five kills in this match. Smith had 16 assists while Sprosty added in nine digs and Bethany Truong added in seven digs.

The Lady Hawks overall had 33 kills, 11 aces, seven blocks, 30 assists and 35 digs against Kentucky State.

As a team, Kentucky State had 16 kills, two aces, three blocks, 15 assists and 34 digs.

The Lady Hawks return to action for their first home match of the season on Wednesday, September 22 against Augusta University. The match is slated to start at 6 p.m. in the Winthrop-King Centre.

Berry suffers first setback of season

The No. 7-ranked Berry volleyball team saw its perfect start to the season come to a halt Sunday afternoon at the Cage Center when Birmingham-Southern handed the Vikings a 3-1 Southern Athletic Association defeat.

The loss gives Berry a 7-1 overall record and a 2-1 SAA slate heading into a challenging three-game this weekend when the Vikings visit non-conference foe Transylvania in Lexington on Friday night, then takes on SAA opponents Centre and Sewanee on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.

Against Birmingham-Southern, the visiting Panthers claimed 25-19 and 25-23 decisions in the opening two sets, but the Vikings charged back with a solid 25-9 decision to win the third set. Southern, however, regained its momentum in the fourth set clinching the match with a 25-21 outcome.

Peyton Breissinger led Berry at the net with 18 kills and Jazzy Innis had 10, Emily Rapach recorded 41 assists, Laura Beier came up with 24 digs and Kate Whittle added 12, and Bella Boston, Lilly Teagle and Rapach finished with three blocks each.

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