Lancers demonstrate growth from 2016

Published 10:00 am Thursday, August 17, 2017

A late two-goal rally by Longwood University’s men’s soccer team in the second half was spoiled by a game-winner from University of North Carolina at Charlotte forward Daniel Bruce in the 83rd minute to lift the 15th-ranked 49ers to a 3-2 win in a preseason contest Tuesday night at TransAmerica Field.

“A lot of the issues were self-inflicting, and we really were just hanging on in the first half,” said Longwood Head Coach Jon Atkinson. “To be fair, Charlotte could’ve been home and dry if they took their chances, but that woke us up, and I’m proud of the character on display to make a contest of it.”

A resilient Longwood squad that featured 21 players throughout saw a goal from Sherif Maalouf in the 68th minute, before Eoin O Donovan netted the equalizer in the 73rd minute off an assist from reigning NCAA assist leader Dan Campos.

Email newsletter signup

“This was a good test for our squad against a caliber team early in the preseason,” Atkinson said. “We’ll take away some positives while reflecting on some errors that will be ironed out, but overall we’re in a better position than this time last year.”

A product of Bergen, Norway, Campos picked up where he left off in a 2016 Longwood run that ended in the Big South Championship, as he tallied 11 points in the Lancers last four games.

Freshman Holden Fisher nearly gave the Lancers a lead moments prior to Bruce’s goal, as the rookie hit the crossbar.

Lance Da Silva and freshman Jacob Reimers split time in goal for the Lancers, with Da Silva making three saves in the first half and Reimers making a trio of saves in the second half.

The appearance from Reimers marked the season debut for the freshman, as five newcomers — Reimers, Fisher, Josh Hanratty,  Luke Ahalt and Marcel Guzman — saw the field.

“We forged a comeback with some grit and determination and got some good goals,” Atkinson said. “We had a lot of rotation with some freshmen getting blooded and showing promise in the process.”