CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (Aug. 28, 2015) – The FIU men’s soccer team (0-1-0) dropped a tough 1-0 decision to the fifth-ranked Carolina Tar Heels on Friday night. The deciding goal came in the 82nd minute when UNC senior Raby George netted a penalty kick to put the Tar Heels on top.
For the match, FIU was outshot by UNC, 17-9, but shots on goal were knotted up at four apiece. Junior keeper Robin Spiegel made three saves in goal for the night.
Through the first 20 minutes of action, not much was going for either side, as junior Paul Marie recorded the game’s only shot in that time-span. UNC’s Colton Strom was the first player in the match to put the ball on net, where Spiegel was right there to make the save. Then in the 25th minute, the Tar Heels kept applying pressure by forcing a corner kick which led to a left footed volley off the corner that rang off the crossbar.
Shortly before the midway point of the match, the Panthers had their best opportunity so far when juniorJuan Benedetty took a free kick from about 30 yards out. Benedetty’s play into the box went on goal, but nearly found the foot of junior center back Marvin Hezel.
The Tar Heels had the first best opportunity in the second half, but Spiegel’s strong play kept the Panthers in the game. UNC’s Zach Wright gathered a ball right on the doorstep of Spiegel, but the senior keeper robbed him of a goal to keep the match at 0-0. Minutes later, a dangerous free kick into the box from 19 yards out was nicely punched out by Spiegel.
FIU’s best opportunity of the night came in the 68th minute on a free kick opportunity. Sophomore Brad Fountain, playing in his first career game in a Panther uniform. The sophomore ripped his attempt over the keeper’s reach, but it rang off the crossbar in an attempt to give FIU a 1-0 advantage.
The deciding goal came in the 82nd minute on a very tough call in the box. Hezel was whistled for a hand ball, resulting in George’s successful penalty kick to make it a 1-nil game.
The Panthers have a quick turnaround as they head to Wake Forest on Sunday night match at 7 p.m. FIU and Wake Forest will be facing off for the fourth time. The Demon Deacons hold a slight 2-1 edge over the Panthers, including 3-0 victory over FIU back in 2008. FIU won the first-ever meeting between the two teams by a score of 4-1 in 2004 at the FIU Soccer Stadium.
Fans are encouraged to follow the Panthers on Twitter (@FIUMensSoccer) and become a fan on Facebook (Facebook.com/FIUMensSoccer) for all the latest Men’s Soccer news. Follow all of FIU’s 18 athletic teams on Twitter (@FIUAthletics), Facebook (Facebook.com/FIUSports), YouTube (FIUPanthers), and Instagram (FIUathletics).
About FIU Athletics: FIU Athletics is home to more than 400 student-athletes in 18 different sports. Athletic events are played in seven different venues on FIU’s campuses (Modesto A. Maidique and Biscayne Bay), including FIU Arena and Ocean Bank Field at FIU Stadium.
About FIU: Florida International University is recognized as a Carnegie engaged university. It is a public research university with colleges and schools that offer more than 180 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs in fields such as engineering, international relations, architecture, law and medicine. As one of South Florida’s anchor institutions, FIU contributes $8.9 billion each year to the local economy. FIU is Worlds Ahead in finding solutions to the most challenging problems of our time. FIU emphasizes research as a major component of its mission. FIU has awarded over 200,000 degrees and enrolls more than 54,000 students in two campuses and three centers including FIU Downtown on Brickell, FIU@I-75, and the Miami Beach Urban Studios. FIU also supports artistic and cultural engagement through its three museums: the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum, the Wolfsonian-FIU, and the Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU. FIU is a member of Conference USA and has over 400 student-athletes participating in 18 sports. For more information about FIU, visit http://www.fiu.edu/.