Campbell shuts out UNCG 1-0 in regular season opener
GREENSBORO, N.C. - Isaiah Page scored the game-winning goal off a misplayed clearance in the 52nd minute and Matthew Mozynski made 10 saves in his collegiate debut as Campbell blanked UNCG 1-0 at the UNCG Soccer Stadium on Friday evening.
The victory was Campbell's first over the Spartans since Oct. 1, 1994, and was just the second in program history against UNCG on the Spartans' home field. It also marked Campbell's first season-opening win since the 2008 season.
"You always want to start off the season on the right foot, regardless of whether the win is ideal or not," Head Coach Steve Armas said of his team's effort. "It was clearly a team win. You look at the collective work of the group and you can easily see steps in the right direction."
Mozynski, who played all 90 minutes in net to earn the solo shutout, made eight of his 10 saves in the second half to preserve the victory for the Camels. The redshirt freshman made a variety of different saves, from using his forearm to force a shot over the crossbar to kicking away chances with his feet.
"I thought the whole team played well and fought throughout the match. We're off to a good start. I wanted to give the guys a shot to win the match; Isaiah finished his chance and that got us the win," Mozynski said of his performance.
Offensively, a quartet of Camels recorded three shots apiece to lead the team. Ricki Gaez, Bradley Farias, Tunji Osifeso and Page led the way, while Michael Clemmons and Marco Perez each had one shot as well.
For UNCG, Jacques Francois and Neico Regent each launched five shots, Lukas Zarges had four and both Aaron Reifschneider and Moises Gonzalez fired three.
In goal for the Spartans, Davis Griffin played all 90 minutes and made five saves while surrending only the game-winner.
The Spartans outshot Campbell by a 23-14 margin, including 18-9 in the second half, and had a 5-2 advantage in corner kicks, but Campbell's defense held up under the constant pressure.
Both sides used the first 10 minutes of the match to feel each other out. UNCG notched its first shot on goal on a header that was collected by Mozynski in the eighth minute. Farias responded just one minute later for the Camels, but his attempt was stopped by a defender.
UNCG had another chance off a free kick in the 17th minute, but Mozynski again came up with a save to end the attack.
"When the game breaks down and doesn't go the way that you want it to, you need someone in goal who can sustain a game and keep you in the game," Armas said of Mozynski. "It's a great start for Matt, especially in his first match, and I still think that he's going to keep getting better."
Each team had chances over the next 30 minutes, but the Spartans and the Camels headed into the locker room knotted at 0-0 for halftime.
Osifeso applied early pressure in the second half with a shot on goal in the 50th minute, and Page finally broke through for the Camels two minutes later. UNCG misplayed a clearance inside the 18-yard box and the ball fell to Page's feet. The junior finished the strike for his second career goal to give Campbell a 1-0 lead.
Over the next 10 minutes, UNCG had several chances on goal, none more pressing than a penalty kick chance in the 55th minute, but Mozynski kept his strong game going and turned away the chances in turn.
Despite late chances, Campbell was able to maintain its 1-0 lead the rest of the way and come away with the victory to begin the year.
The Camels will return to action next Saturday, Sept. 6, at 6 p.m. for their home opener at the Eakes Athletics Complex. Campbell will welcome Loyola (Md.) for the seventh all-time meeting in the series between the two schools, which the Greyhounds lead 4-1-1.