UCF Men's Soccer Drops Season Opener at USF


Aug. 31, 2007

Final Stats

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TAMPA, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Despite a goal from junior Mike Mattson (Boca Raton, Fla./Pope John Paul II HS) in the opening five minutes of the match, the UCF men's soccer team fell to host USF, 5-2, Friday night at the USF Soccer Stadium.

"USF is a very good team," said first-year head coach Bryan Cunningham. "We had a fast start with several good scoring chances and played well, but we were unable to maintain that high level of intensity throughout the game. We have to learn to stay disciplined for the full 90 minutes."

Assisted by classmate Chris Andaur (Naples, Fla./Barron Collier HS), Mattson recorded his first goal of the year on a header just over four and a half minutes into the first half. The Knights (0-1-0) held onto the lead until the 27th minute. UCF freshman goalkeeper Sean Johnson (Lilburn, Ga./Brookwood HS) made a save on the initial penalty kick by junior Yohance Marshall, but fellow junior Kevon Neaves capitalized on a subsequent opportunity, recording the first of his three goals on the night.

USF took a 2-1 advantage into intermission as junior Jordan Seabrook found the right side of the net to give the Bulls (1-0-0) in the 28th minute.

Six minutes into the second half, Neaves put the home team up 3-1, before senior James Georgeff (New Castle, Australia) brought UCF within a goal in the 80th minute. USF freshman goalkeeper Diego Restrepo stopped the original shot from freshman Nathaniel Jocelyn (Wellington, Fla./American Heritage HS) but Georgeff was there to knock in the rebound.

Less than two minutes later, a pair of USF goals two minutes apart halted the Knights' momentum and the Bulls, who received votes in the most recent Soccer Times national poll, remained on top at the buzzer.

Johnson finished the night with five saves, while Restrepo made three.

"We have to stay positive and get back to work on Monday," said Cunningham. "We need to look ahead to our next game against another tough opponent."

The Knights return to action at the New Mexico Invitational, where they face reigning BIG EAST Champion Cincinnati on Friday, Sept. 7 at 4:30 p.m. ET. The tournament continues on Sunday, Sept. 9 as UCF takes on Loyola Marymount at 12:30 p.m.

For the latest news and information on the Knights, tickets or apparel log on to www.ucfathletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. Also check out UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pics.