SFC’s Youssoufi earns national acclaim
Spectacular bicycle kick featured on ESPN SportsCenter's Top 10
St. Francis Brooklyn sophomore forward El Mahdi Yousoufi was named the Northeast Conference Player of the Week on Tuesday after scoring three goals in two games for the Terriers.
But the first of those tallies, a spectacular, seldom-seem bicycle kick in a 4-2 victory over NEC rival Central Connecticut State in the league opener for both squads last Friday, got the 5-foot-8 Moroccan some national attention.
Youssoufi’s acrobatic goal made ESPN SportsCenter’s Top 10 highlights for the day, coming in at number seven on the coveted list of the best sporting plays from around the world.
The second-year striker knotted the game at 2-2 with the tally, which saw him dash into the Blue Devils’ box before twisting his body and doing a backwards somersault while drilling junior midfielder Ivan Tapuskovic’s cross beyond the reach of CCSU netminder Jason Dubrovich.
The surreal play sent the entire SFC bench into a frenzy and stunned the crowd of 450 in New Britain, Conn.
It also sparked a three-goal outburst from the Terriers, who rallied from behind to pull out their conference opener.
But Youssoufi wasn’t done.
The Terriers’ leading scorer also added the final tally of the match with a perfectly placed header off a feed from fellow second-year forward Khaled Abdella in the 84th minute.
Abdella finished with a goal and an assist while Youssoufi became the first Terrier to score twice in a single game this season.
SFC was unable to extend its three-game winning streak Sunday, dropping a 2-1 decision to St. Francis Pennsylvania at Brooklyn Bridge Park despite yet another goal from Youssoufi, who pounded home a corner kick from senior midfielder Julien Remiti early in the second half to tie the game at 1-1.
At 5-2-1 overall, the Terriers (1-1 NEC) are just one point behind Robert Morrs for first place in the conference and are ranked seventh in the latest United Soccer Coaches Division I Men Northeast Region poll.
Youssoufi, a native of Tangiers, leads the NEC with five goals and is second in the conference with 10 points.
He and Abdella, a graduate of Bay Ridge’s Fort Hamilton High School, have combined for eight of SFC’s 13 goals this season and both have been honored with the NEC’s Player of the Week award.
The Terriers will shoot for their fourth victory in five contests when they head to Emmitsburg, Maryland on Sunday to take on Mount St. Mary’s.
On the women’s side, the Terriers’ first-year program continued to struggle despite a strong defensive effort in last Saturday’s 1-0 loss to Sacred Heart in Fairfield, Connecticut.
SFC (0-10, 0-6 NEC) held strong until Azria Malloy scored with less than a minute remaining in regulation to deny Head Coach and program founder Justine Lombardi’s squad a shot at its first-ever victory in overtime.
Junior goalkeeper Maggie Boston continued to shine in net, making seven saves to keep the Terriers competitive in a game that saw them get outshot by a 19-7 count.
SFC will gets its 11th shot at its first win Sunday at CCSU. Five of the Terriers’ first 10 defeats have come by a single goal.
Over at Brooklyn College, junior forward Anna Curran snapped a scoreless deadlock in the 47th minute Tuesday night as the Brooklyn College women’s soccer team rolled to a 3-0 triumph over the University of Valley Forge at Brooklyn College field.
Curran’s second tally of the campaign helped the Bulldogs (3-6-1, 1-2 CUNYAC) to their third win in four games since opening the season at 0-5-1.
Sophomore midfielder Rachel Gomez added her team-high eighth and ninth goals of the year, both off assists from Curran, as BC rolled to its third shutout victory of the year behind three saves from senior goalkeeper Carmen Proffitt.
The Bulldogs will be back in action Saturday at York College in Flushing.
The BC men’s team ended a season-opening eight-game losing streak with Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Lehman College at Brooklyn College field.
Junior midfielder Alex Sosa scored both goals for the Bulldogs, including the go-ahead tally just before halftime as BC beat the Lightning for the first time in five years.
Sophomore Lorenzo Davies made only one save, but had several important plays outside of his box for the Bulldogs, who were looking to make it two wins in a row at the College of Staten Island Wednesday afternoon.
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