HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University men’s soccer team remained undefeated on the season with a 3-0 win over Jacksonville University on a rainy Tuesday evening in Vert Stadium. HPU received goals from Ryan Bennett, Mamadee Nyepon and Fejiro Okiomah in the game.
“I thought we performed well in the game tonight,” head coach Dustin Fonder said. “It was a total team effort out there and we got a lot of guys involved in the game. We have a group right now that has really bought into the idea of what is good for the team is good for the individuals. We have a deep team so it is good when you can get guys on the field who deserve minutes.”
The Panthers scored once in the first half and twice in the second to pick up their seventh win of the season. High Point is now 7-0-0 and is undefeated in 12-straight games stretching back to last season. HPU is one of just seven teams in the nation still with a perfect record in 2012. Jacksonville fell to 0-6-1 with the loss.
High Point controlled possession early in the game and forced several strong saves by Dolphin keeper Gavin Carlin. The Panthers got on the board in the 14th minute on When Bennett found the back of the net for his first score of the season. HPU took a short corner and played it in to junior Adam Sewell at the edge of the eight-yard box. Sewell flicked the ball up to freshman Erien Campbell who headed it on to the far post where Bennett was unmarked for an easy header finish.
Despite a 15-3 edge in shots in the first half, the HPU lead remained just 1-0 until the 53rd minute when Mamadee Nyepon scored his seventh goal of the season after an impressive individual run. Nyepon received the ball in the midfield and shouldered off two defenders as he made his way into the box. The sophomore then shrugged off a tackle attempt in the box before ripping a shot past the keeper from eight-yards away.
The Panthers got a third goal in the 69th minute when central defender Fejiro Okiomah was rewarded for a strong run with his first goal of the season to make the score 3-0. Okiomah carried the ball from the defensive third through the midfield before sliding a pass to senior Shawn Sloan. Okiomah then continued his run into the box where Sloan lofted a pass to him over the backline. Okiomah shrugged off a defender before slotting a low shot past Carlin.
The High Point defense stifled Jacksonville all night, allowing just three shots total and none in the second half. Redshirt-freshman Kody Palmer made two saves in the game on the way to his fourth clean sheet of the season.
HPU’s 30 shots on the night fell two shy of the Panthers’ Div. I single-game record on 32 set back in 2010. Nyepon led the team on the night with a career-high 10 shots in the contest.
High Point will continue its current six-game home stand on Saturday, Sept. 22, when the team will re-enter Big South play with a game against UNC Asheville at 7 p.m. The Panthers are 14-6-2 all-time against Asheville. The two sides tied 1-1 last season in Asheville, N.C. This season, the Bulldogs are just 1-6-0 overall and 0-1-0 in the Big South.