Elon Men’s Soccer Upsets #6 Charlotte, 2-0, at Home

Posted by Press Release on September 22, 2012 at 11:12 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

ELON, N.C. – A pair of Chris Thomas first-half goals followed by great overall team defense in the second stanza helped the Elon men’s soccer team defeat sixth-ranked Charlotte, 2-0, Saturday evening at Rudd Field.

The win gives the Phoenix (5-2) its fifth win in its last six matches while giving the program its highest win versus a ranked opponent since it topped 16th-ranked Furman last year in the Southern Conference Tournament. Charlotte moves to 5-1-1 with the loss, its first since dropping a 1-0 decision to top-ranked North Carolina in last year’s NCAA National Championship match.

“Charlotte is a fantastic team,” said Elon head coach Darren Powell. “We knew that going into the game and we told our guys to stay focused, play hard and committed and it showed with what we did tonight.”

Thomas netted his ninth goal of the season in the 13th minute after blasting a shot into the back left corner of the goal from inside the box, courtesy of a Matt Wescoe helper.

Thomas then added his second score of the contest after a Wescoe cross from 18 yards out giving him 10 goals on the young season. The senior forward also became the second player in the program’s history with 40 scores in a career sitting in second place on the Elon all-time list behind Mike Wessels’ (1985-89) mark of 43 goals.

The two-goal advantage was all the maroon and gold would need to stave off the 49ers, despite the 17-8 shot difference. Charlotte had multiple chances to score early on at the beginning of both halves, but was frequently denied by Elon’s defensive efforts.

In the 72nd minute, the 49ers got its best opportunity for to get on the scoreboard, but keeper Nathan Dean was able to corral the ball after a Donnie Smith shot.

Charlotte had 10 shots overall in the second half, but still went scoreless for the first time this season. Dean played all 90 minutes between the posts for Elon as he had his first shutout of the season.

Elon hosts Radford on Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. before opening Southern Conference play at Davidson on Friday, Sept. 28.

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