GREENSBORO, NC – UNC Greensboro rallied from an early 1-0 deficit to take sole possession of first place in the Southern Conference men’s soccer standings with a 3-1 win in front of a Homecoming crowd of 2,545 at UNCG Soccer Stadium.
With the win, UNCG is 18-2-2 all-time on Homecoming, outscoring the opposition 74-15. The Spartans (7-4-1, 2-0-1) have won three straight and are unbeaten in their last four, while the Phoenix (8-4-1, 2-1-0) lost their second straight and fell from the top of the SoCon standings.
Elon took an early 1-0 lead when Matt Bengston scored just 6:29 into the match. Kiki Willis hustled after a loose ball that was headed for the end line and sent it back across the field. Brett Paschall then fed the ball back into the box from the left wing, where a sliding Bengston got a foot on it for this first goal of the season.
UNCG responded to tie the game just before halftime and changed the momentum. Mike Richardson blasted a pass from the left corner and Hermann Trophy candidate Randi Patterson, well-covered by the Elon defense, dove to get a head on it for his eighth goal of the season. The two-time All-American’s tally made it a 1-1 game with just 4:20 to play before half.
The Spartans received an own goal just 1:22 into the second half to take the lead. Looking for Patterson again, Michael FitzGerald crossed the ball from the right wing and it bounced off of an Elon defender into the goal.
FitzGerald closed out the scoring at 73:06 with his fifth goal of the season. A back pass to the keeper was misplayed and FitzGerald took advantage, chipping it in from 13 yards out.
The crowd of 2,545 was the seventh-largest crowd to see a UNCG men’s soccer match since the Spartans built UNCG Soccer Stadium in 1991. It was the largest since 2004 when UNCG hosted North Carolina in front of 2,608.
The Spartans will host Wofford on Tuesday night at 7 pm.
Elon University..... 1 0 - 1
UNC Greensboro...... 1 2 - 3
SCORING SUMMARY: ELON Bengston (Paschall; Willis), 6:29; UNCG Patterson (Richardson), 40:40; UNCG OWN GOAL, 46:22; UNCG FitzGerald (unassisted), 73:06. Shots: Elon University 12, UNC Greensboro 12. Saves: Elon University 4 (Saxe 4), UNC Greensboro 2 (Berry 2). Corner Kicks: Elon 12, UNC Greensboro 2. Fouls: Elon 16, UNC Greensboro 17.
- UNCG -