Beggs Delivers Game-Winner for Spartans
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Maurice Beggs (Arima, Trinidad/Middle Georgia College) scored what proved the be the difference in the 15th-minute on Wednesday night as the USC Upstate men's soccer team downed visiting UNC Asheville, 1-0, at County University Soccer Stadium.
After a 32 minute weather delay to start the match, it took the Spartans (1-3-2) all of 32 seconds to go on the attack. Tim Bailey (Simpsonville, S.C./Southern Wesleyan University) took the first shot of the match, but his attempt from the left side was saved by Bulldog keeper Lassi Hurskainen.
In the sixth-minute, Colin Francis (Toronto, Ontario/Father Leo J. Austin) had his shot from 22 yards out sail over the cross bar. Less than three minutes later, Hakeem King (Port of Spain, Trinidad/St. Mary's College) had his shot saved by Hurskainen to keep the match scoreless.
In the 15th-minute, Erkan Yildirim (Flensburg, Germany/Flensburg University) lined up for the corner kick from the left side. A streaking Beggs found the back of the net on his shot from the right side to give the Spartans the 1-0 lead.
In the 21st-minute, Asheville (2-4-0) had a golden opportunity to tie the match as Bryan Bartels beat Upstate keeper Jason McCabe (Irmo, S.C./Dutch Fork), but a sliding save by John Kadane (Garland, Texas/John Paul II) allowed Upstate to maintain the 1-0 lead.
At halftime, Upstate found itself on top, 1-0, despite being outshot 15-8 and trailing 4-2 in corner kicks.
In the 80th-minute Philipp Soppa (Sonsbeck, Germany/Berufskolleg Geldern) headed away a potential scoring chance for Asheville after Connor Holzinger took a corner kick from the right side.
In the 87th-minute, McCabe kept the Spartans in front as he saved J.J. Morrow's shot from the left side. Less than 30 seconds later, McCabe dove and snagged an attempted cross by the Bulldogs.
The final chance for Asheville came at the 89:21 mark when Morrow again tried to tie the match. This time his header sailed wide right and the Spartans were able to maintain possession and earn its first victory of 2010 and improve to 5-0-0 all-time against the Bulldogs.
Asheville led the way in shots (21-11), however, both teams recorded six on target. The Bulldogs also owned a 9-6 advantage in corner kicks. Upstate was whistled for nine fouls and one offsides penalty, while Asheville was called for eight fouls and one offsides penalty.
Upstate will return to action on Saturday night when they host Furman in the final non-conference match of 2010. Kick-off at County University Soccer Stadium is slated for 7:00 p.m.