Men's Soccer Closes Out 2007 Season with a 2-1 Loss to Marshall


Nov. 9, 2007

Final Stats

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ORLANDO, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - In its final match of the 2007 season, the UCF men's soccer team suffered a 2-1 loss at the hands of Marshall Friday in Orlando. The Knights finished the year with a 4-12-2 overall record and a 0-6-2 mark in Conference USA.

Before the game, the Knights' three seniors, Brian Pope (Durham, N.H.), Philip Michael Hall (Clermont, Fla.) and James Georgeff (New Castle, Australia) were all honored as they played their final home game at the UCF Soccer Complex.

"All three of (our seniors) had exceptional character and an exceptional work ethic," said first-year head coach Bryan Cunningham. "You can only hope that that filtered down to some of our younger players. Now we've got a lot to do in the offseason and we are going to rebuild."

Pope received the start in goal for the Knights, but had to be taken out as soon as the match began due to his injury. Marshall (9-8-1, 3-5-0) agreed beforehand to allow Pope to be subbed for and gave the ball to Pope before he kicked it out of bounds, permitting freshman Sean Johnson to take over in net.

UCF finished with a 17-15 edge in the shot department, including posting 13 in the second half. Johnson capped off the night with three saves.

Marshall was able to jump on UCF for a 1-0 lead when Dana Heimbecker found a lane through the defense and hit the back of the net in the third minute. The Knights' best chance to even things up in the first half came with less than 10 seconds remaining. A free kick was sent in the box towards the left side and Hall rose above two defenders and goalkeeper Brad Kennedy to head it over to the right post. However, it sailed only a foot wide and the Herd was able to escape with a 1-0 lead entering the break.

The Herd's offense returned 3:23 into the second half to take a 2-0 lead thanks to a goal from Kolby LaCrone. This time, though, the Knights responded right away in the 52nd minute. Quickly finding himself in a breakaway opportunity, Matt Luzunaris lifted a perfect shot from about 27 yards out and over Kennedy to cut the lead in half. It was Luzunaris' fourth goal of the season as Ryan Roushandel notched the assist.

UCF's energy picked up dramatically following the goal, and started to earn plenty of chances in the Marshall zone. Hall eventually scooted into the box on a corner kick around the 58th minute and gained possession only to see the Herd defense step into his shooting lanes. That would be the theme for the rest of the half as even though UCF had a 13-3 advantage in shots in the final session, it could not score the equalizer.

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