Longwood, High Point & Liberty Pick Up Wins on Wednesday

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Longwood Defeats VMI, 3-2
FARMVILLE, Va. -- The Longwood University men's soccer team defeated Big South Conference opponent VMI (1-4, 0-1), 3-2, on Wednesday evening at the Athletics Complex in Farmville. Sophomore Jonathan Kukapa|Leesburg (Clarksburg Md.) scored the winning goal for the Lancers (2-4, 2-3) in the 83rd minute to guide his squad to victory. Longwood returns to action on Saturday, September 15, when it travels to High Point University for a 7 p.m. tilt.
 
Kukapa totaled three points in the outing to lead all scorers. Junior Jared Windt|Haymarket (Battlefield) and freshman Sam Yardley|Fairfax Station (Robinson) each added to the offensive effort with their first-career goals. Anthony Ugorji|Washington, D.C. (Archbishop Carroll) tallied an assist in the contest, as well. Freshman goalkeeper Carl Carpenter|Charlottesville (St. Anne's Belfield School) tallied two saves to record the victory in net for the Lancers.

Longwood controlled the pace of play early, tallying eight shots in the first 45 minutes while not allowing VMI to take any. Neither squad was able to move the net in the first period, but the Lancers came close in the 26th minute when freshman Christian Keilty|Spotsylvania (Riverbend) fired a hard shot to the right post, but the VMI keeper was able to scoop it up with a sliding save to extinguish the opportunity. Later in the half, senior Devin Pierce|Virginia Breach (Ocean Lakes) headed a cross from senior Adel Sarras|Burke (Annandale), but it sailed just high, hitting the crossbar. In the last five minutes of the first, the Lancers had two chances, as freshman Mike Durr|Brandon, Miss. (Brandon) and Ugorji put shots directly on goal, but the Keydets goalkeeper came up with the saves to send the teams to the locker rooms knotted at 0-0.

Both squads went on the attack coming out of the break, combining for all five of the game's goals in the second half. VMI broke the match open in the 47th minute when Kyle Farmer sent a pass to David Rochow, who's header found its way under the crossbar to give the Keydets a 1-0 advantage.

After more than 27 minutes of scoreless action, Windt was awarded a penalty kick for the Lancers after VMI was issued a yellow card in the 74th minute. Windt sent his shot high to find the back of the net just over the outstretched fingers of the Keydets' keeper to make it a 1-1 game.

The Lancers took their first lead of the night less than 30 seconds later, as Kukapa made a pass from the left side of the box that found Yardley near the right post for the header on goal.

In the 79th minute, the Keydets retaliated to tie the score for the second time in the match. Farmer lobbed a pass to the right side of the goal to set up Blake McCauley, who converted on a diving header.

The Lancers scored what would become the winning goal in the 83rd minute of play when Ugorji and Kukapa set off on a 2-on-1 breakaway that ended when Ugorji dribbled to the end line and sent a cross in front of the net to Kukapa, who fired into the right side of the net to give Longwood the 3-2 victory.

Longwood outshot VMI, 16-5, in the match. Wednesday's outing marked the 13th meeting between the Lancers and the Keydets in the sport of men's soccer. Longwood now leads the all-time series, 10-3.

Longwood returns to action on Saturday, Sept. 15 as it travels to High Point for a 7:00pm match.

Meanwhile, VMI's next match is slated for Tuesday, Sept. 18 at Virginia Tech.  Match time is scheduled for 7:00pm.

High Point Improves to 5-0 with 2-0 Win Over UNC Greensboro
The High Point University men's soccer team picked up its fifth-straight win to start the season with a 2-0 victory over inter-triad rival UNC Greensboro in front of a record crowd of 2138 in Vert Stadium on Wednesday night. Sophomore Mamadee Nyepon scored his fifth goal in three games to lead HPU.
 
After a back-and-forth opening 20 minutes that saw both teams battling to maintain possession in the midfield, the Panthers took control of the game in the 22nd minute when Nyepon connected with a shot from just inside the penalty area to put High Point ahead, 1-0. Senior Shane Malcolm started the play with a pass from the right side to Nyepon at the top of the box. The forward let the ball roll past him and spun off his defender before unleashing a shot that hit through Spartan keeper Peyton Ford's hands and into the net.
 
Just two minutes later, HPU doubled its lead when senior Shawn Sloan got behind the defense and scored his second tally of the season. The midfielder pounced on a misplay by the UNCG backline and broke in on the keeper with an escort of two Panther teammates. Sloan dribbled in from the left side and hit a rocket to the far post that Ford was unable to keep out of the back of the net.
 
High Point keeper Kody Palmer made three saves on the night and did a good job organizing the defenders in front of him as HPU posted its third-straight shutout. The backline limited the Spartan offense to just three shots on frame and just one in the final 45 minutes. The Panthers have not allowed a goal since the 75th minute against Adelphi on Aug. 31, a scoreless streak of 285:59 minutes.
 
HPU's 5-0-0 start to the season is the best in the team's Div. I history. The Panthers are undefeated in their last 10 games stretching back to last season, having last lost to Longwood, High Point's opponent on Saturday, on Oct. 25, 2011.
 
The Panthers will host the Lancers this Saturday, Sept. 15, at 7 p.m. The game will mark the opening of Big South for HPU this season. Longwood is just 2-4-0 overall and 2-3-0 Big South play in its first year in the conference.  With its 2-1 loss last season, High Point enters the weekend with a 4-5-1 all-time record against the Lancers.

Liberty Downs Howard, 3-2
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Greg White and Sam Duininck each scored their second goals of the year, helping to lead the Liberty Flames past the Howard Bison, 3-2, Wednesday evening at Greene Field.

Liberty moves 2-3 on the season. The victory was the Flames' fifth consecutive win over the Bison and snaps a two-game Liberty losing streak on the year. Howard drops to 0-7.

After two attempts by Bison midfielder Brian Monge went wide during the contest's the opening minutes, the visiting Flames netted the game's first goal during the 11th minute. Taking a pass from midfielder Johnny Torres, Duininck found the back of the net for a 1-0 lead.

In the 16th minute, Liberty goalkeeper Sam Chappell made his first save of the contest, stopping a shot off the foot of Howard forward Keishon Barrett.

After Chappell made a save off a shot by Bison Donny-Joshua Felix in the 28th minute, White fired an attempt, forcing a save by Howard goalkeeper Eric Hamilton two minutes later.

Each team had six shots during first half, while Liberty held the advantage in corner kicks, 4-2.

Liberty midfielder Tim Harbison opened the second half by ripping a shot, which forced a diving save by Hamilton during the 51st minute.

Defender Uriah Bentick gave the Flames a 2-0 lead at 58:20. After a foul in the 18-yard box, resulting in a penalty kick, the senior converted the kick for his first goal of the year, extending the Liberty lead.

The host Bison erased the Flames lead with back-to-back goals by midfielder Phil Coker during a three minute span. Coker scored his first goal of the season at 71:35, cutting the Liberty edge to 2-1.

Three minutes later on the game's next shot, a Coker attempt found its way into the net, tying the contest at 2-2 during the 75th minute.

A shot high by Torres off the restart started a span in which Liberty controlled play, outshooting the Bison, 4-1. Flames midfielder Blessing Tahouna forced a save by Hamilton with a shot during the 83rd minute.

Two minutes later, White took a crossing pass from Harbison and blasted a shot past Hamilton, giving Liberty a 3-2 advantage at 84:21.

Trailing by a goal, host Howard pushed players forward looking for the equalizer. The Flames defense stood firm, allowing the Bison two long shot attempts which went wide, sealing Liberty's win.

Shots were even for the game at 13-13. The Flames held the edge in corner kicks, 4-3.

Chappell records the first win of his collegiate career, making three saves. Hamilton recorded three saves in the Howard net.

The Flames now have seven days off before their next contest. Liberty will host the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers at the Campus East fields, next Wednesday. Match time is scheduled for 4 p.m.