Nov. 20, 2011
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The No. 11 UAB men's soccer team dropped a 3-1 decision to Charlotte in the 2011 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship second round at West Campus Field on Sunday night. The contest was played in front of 2,214 fans, which is the third-largest crowd in program history.
With the loss, the Blazers finish an outstanding season with a final record of 13-5-3 overall.
"Obviously it's a disappointing night," UAB head coach Mike Getman said. "We gave up a goal in the first minute of each half and when you give goals up early, it makes it tough. This team played so hard all season long and tonight was no different. I was proud of the way we finished. I'm just disappointed we didn't get the result."
Charlotte wasted no time getting on the board first when senior forward Evan James scored his fifth goal of the season just 43 seconds into the contest. James' goal was set up by a low cross from Giuseppe Gentile that found the streaking James right in front of goal. James calmly deposited the ball past UAB goalkeeper Carl Woszczynski and into the back of the net for the early 1-0 lead.
It was the same exact scenario for the 49ers to begin the second half. This time, the goal was scored only 1:16 into the second half. Charlotte's T.J. Beaulieu sent a through ball to the feet of Jennings Rex, who then slipped the ball past Woszczynski and into the lower right corner for a 2-0 Charlotte advantage.
Just over three minutes later, at the 49:24 mark, the 49ers extended their lead to a three-goal advantage when Beaulieu took a pass from Isaac Caughran and drilled a shot past Woszczynski for an insurmountable 3-0 lead.
But the Blazers would not go down without a fight. UAB answered just under a minute later, at the 50:36 mark, when junior Kofi Gyawu sent a long cross to the back post that found a wide open Chase Wickham. The Vancouver, B.C. native then snapped a header into the right side of the net to cut the Charlotte lead to 3-1.
UAB had another couple solid scoring opportunities in the 64th minute and the 70th minute. However, two different Charlotte defenders each made a team save with its goalkeeper out of position in both instances, keeping the 49er lead at two goals.
"Giving up two early goals like we did to start each half, I can't say I have ever had something like that happen before but it certainly made the game very difficult for us," Getman said. "We played great soccer in the last 30 minutes. We scored a goal, their keeper made a couple of great saves and we had two balls get cleared off the line. I think if we get a second goal, then we have all the momentum and anything can happen. But at this level, you can't give up three goals and expect to win a game."
The Blazers end the 2011 campaign with the program's first outright C-USA regular season title since 1999 and a final record of 13-5-3. The 13 victories are the most for a UAB team since winning 15 matches in 2001.