After dropping its first match of the season, the Dalton State College men's soccer team is now on a four-game winning streak following its 2-0 victory over Milligan College on Saturday at Lakeshore Park.
So what's working for the Roadrunners?
"They are working hard, and that's what we have asked them to do," coach Saif Alsafeer said. "Believe in each other and believe in what we are trying to accomplish -- they are really doing that."
Most recently, Dalton State (4-1) topped Bryan College, 2-1, in an overtime victory on the road. Finding a way to sneak away with the lead has become a common theme, scoring eight goals so far this season.
After multiple chances early in the game, Santiago Moore was the first to score for the Roadrunners just before halftime with the assist from Taeylor Fisch.
"There are some details that could be better," Alsafeer said, who is in his first year at Dalton State. "In the first 10 minutes, we could have been up by two or three and that changes the game a lot. We know with this group it's going to be hard, though. We haven't had any time to recruit, so all we asked is that they work hard, and they are doing something special right now."
Though the team has momentum, it won't enter conference play until the end of this month.
"It's really early," Alsafeer said. "We have a long way to go, and we have to improve a ton. We have to find a way to not be dominated as much, but if we find a way to win along the way while we are finding a way then we are pretty happy with that."
Sophomore Noah Thomas extended the lead for Dalton State when he weaved through multiple Milligan defenders for an open look at the goal with less than eight minutes remaining in the match.
To add to his team's cushion, Thomas finished the run with a celebration dance before high-fiving with teammates.
"It felt pretty good," he said. "Coach has been telling us to work hard, so that's what I did and it just kind of happened.
"We really need to stay organized and stick to the game plan. When we do that, it works. Especially when you're super tired, it can get crazy but you just have to figure it out."
Dalton State's defense also held it own on Saturday and now has three shutouts on the season with leadership from goalkeeper Aaron Fraire.
The Roadrunners are back in action on Wednesday when they travel to Point University for a match at 7 p.m.