UCF Falls to Stetson in Men's Soccer Home Opener


Sept. 12, 2007

Final Stats

UCF-Stetson Box Score in PDF Format
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ORLANDO, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - A late second half goal by freshman forward Eugene Starikov gave visiting Stetson (2-2-0) a 2-1 win over UCF (2-2-0) in men's soccer action on Wednesday night at the UCF Soccer Complex.

Although inclement weather delayed the kickoff for half an hour, both teams found offensive chances early. A shot by Hatter Gabe Shilby hit the post in the seventh minute before the Knights scored 11 minutes later. Junior forward Mike Mattson's (Boca Raton, Fla./Pope John Paul II HS) deflection was mishandled by Stetson goalkeeper Evan White and found the back of the net. Freshman midfielder Dustin McCarty (Maitland, Fla./Winter Park HS) earned the assist.

UCF had the opportunity to take a 2-1 lead, but the bullet by senior James Georgeff (New Castle, Australia) hit the inside of the post. Stetson's senior Tanner Wolfe tied the game in the 43rd minute, scoring short side.

Starikov tallied the game-winner in the 83rd minute when he knocked in the rebound off Kirk Labusch's original shot. With less than two minutes remaining to play in regulation, UCF had chances to send the match into extra sessions, but all three missed the target.

"We knew going into the game that it would be tough and physical," said first-year head coach Bryan Cunningham. "Coming off the weekend, we had some tired legs but these are the type of games you have to be prepared for. An opponent like Stetson is going to make you work on both ends of the ball. It is a simple as we got outworked on both ends of the field."

The Knights, who are ranked No. 10 in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) South Region poll, return to the road for the weekend, opening up their Conference USA schedule against Memphis on Saturday, Sept. 15 at noon before visiting non-conference opponent Boston University for a match on Monday, Sept. 17 at 7 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.