Second-half surge lifts HPU men’s soccer to 3-0 win over Longwood

• Three second-half goals lifted High Point to a 3-0 win over Longwood at Vert on Wednesday.
• Three freshmen, Bana Ganidekam, Siggi Benonysson and Chad Poarch, all had a goal and an assist in the win.
• Redshirt-freshman Keegan Meyer made three saves to notch his second clean sheet of the season.

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University men’s soccer team scored three second-half goals to pull away for a 3-0 win over Longwood on Wednesday night at Vert Stadium. Redshirt-freshman Bana Ganidekam and freshmen Siggi Benonysson and Chad Poarch all finished with a goal and an assist for HPU.

“This was a very important win tonight,” head coach EJ O’Keeffe said. “We needed to get that first win in conference play and we wanted to make sure we protected our home turf. Anytime you can post a shutout and take all three points in a league game it is a success.”

The win snaps a four-game winless streak for High Point and improves the team’s record to 6-3-2 overall and 1-1-0 in the Big South. Longwood drops to 4-6-1 overall and 1-2-0 in the Big South with the loss.

After being held scoreless in a first half in which HPU outshot Longwood, 13-1, the Panthers took the lead just two minutes into the second half on freshman Chad Poarch’s first collegiate goal. The defender intercepted the ball at midfield and split two defenders before scoring with a shot from 15 yards out.

High Point doubled its lead in the 55th minute on a goal by redshirt-freshman Bana Ganidekam. Poarch combined on a passing sequence with freshman Siggi Benonysson to get free on the right before hitting a cross to Ganidekam who finished at the goalmouth.

Benonysson joined the party just five minutes later with his fifth goal of the season to extend the HPU lead to 3-0. Ganidekam played senior Chris Ramsell in behind the defense and the forward dribbled in on the keeper before unselfishly laying the ball off to Benonysson for the easy finish.

The Panthers finished with a commanding 26-4 edge in shots with 10 shots on goal compared to just three for the visitors. Redshirt-freshman Keegan Meyer made three saves, including two in one-on-one situations, to earn his second shutout of the season.

High Point next hits the road for two-straight games starting with a conference match against Winthrop on Saturday, Oct. 8, in Rock Hill, S.C. Kickoff against the Eagles is set for 7 p.m.