HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University men’s soccer team came back for a 3-1 win over Appalachian State in exhibition action on Saturday night in front of nearly 2,000 fans at Vert Track, Soccer and Lacrosse Stadium. Sophomore Leon Carby scored twice to pace the Panthers in the win.
“It was important for us to come out and learn more about our team here tonight,” head coach Dustin Fonder said. “We got off to a slow start but we showed good character and responded well after going down. The second half was much better and more indicative of how we believe we will play in the future.”
Appalachian State jumped out to the early lead in the game when the Mountaineers Ewaihia Amhanesi scored in the 17th minute of play. ASU’s Josiah Trower took a shot from the left side of the 18 that was saved by High Point keeper Kody Palmer. The rebound fell to the feet of Amhanesi who deposited the ball in the empty net.
The Panthers trailed until the 26th minute when Carby scored his first of two goals to tie the game at 1-1. The midfielder got the ball on the left side of the field and dribbled to the top of the penalty area where he split two defenders before unleashing a hard shot into the upper 90 on the right side.
High Point took control of the game to start the second half creating several scoring chances right after play resumed. The pressure finally forced a breakthrough in the 61st minute when junior Adam Sewell scored on a header off a corner kick. Freshman Austin Yearwood took the kick from the right corner and lofted a ball to the far post where Sewell made a late run and snuck the ball inside the post for a 2-1 lead.
HPU doubled its lead just five minutes later when Carby found his second goal of the night to make the score 3-1. Senior Shane Malcolm split two defenders on the right side of the box and got in one-on-one with the keeper. His shot to the far post was stopped with a diving save but the rebound fell to Carby who calmly slotted the ball home for the tally.
High Point doubled up ASU in shots for the game with an 18-9 edge including an 11-3 advantage in shots on goal. The Panthers also finished with a 9-4 lead in corner kicks for the game. Appalachian State keeper Paul West made seven saves in the game to keep the Mountaineers within striking distance.
The Panthers officially kickoff the 2012 season on Saturday, Aug. 25, when they travel to Elon, N.C., to take on Elon University. High Point and Elon have faced each other in the season opener in each of the past four seasons with HPU notching a 3-0-1 record in the four meetings.