Liberty Opens Big South Play with 4-3 Win

September 26, 2016

      Rock Hill, S.C. – Midfielder Kevin Mendoza netted two first half goals and Tresor Mbuyu and Martin Agredo each scored a goal in the second half, helping Liberty post a 4-3 win over the Winthrop Eagles, Saturday evening at Eagle Stadium in the Big South Conference opener for both teams.

      Mendoza gave the Flames a 2-0 advantage at halftime with his second and third goals of the season. Later, he added an assist for five points on the night, the most in one game for the midfielder. It was also the first time in the sophomore’s career that he has scored more than one goal in a contest.

      Mbuyu then pushed the Liberty lead to 3-0 with his team-leading fifth goal of the year moments into the second half. After two quick goals by the Eagles cut the Flames’ edge to 3-2, Agredo netted his second goal of the year for a 4-2 visitors’ advantage and a lead Liberty never relinquished.

      Liberty moves to 4-3-1 overall and starts Big South play at 1-0. With the victory, the Flames are 3-1 on the road, this season. Winthrop drops to 4-3 overall and 0-1 in conference. The contest was the Eagles first home contest of 2016.

      Mendoza netted his first of two goals of the contest on Liberty’s first shot of the match. The midfielder dribble into the 18-yard box and beat an Eagle defender one-on-one for a shot which he finished high into the net over Winthrop goalkeeper Kenneth Perkinson’s head for a 1-0 edge at 20:22.

      11 minutes later, Mendoza pushed the Liberty advantage to 2-0. Midfielder Kyle Carr served the ball into the box for his fellow midfielder, who ripped the Flames’ second shot of the night into the lower right corner of the net at 31:24.

      Liberty extended its lead less than two minutes into the second half. Mendoza inserted a well-placed pass near the left post for Mbuyu. The forward collected it and scored into the right hand corner, giving Liberty a three-goal lead at 1:26 into the half.

      Back-to-back markers by James Skonicki moved host Winthrop to within one goal on the scoreboard. The midfielder took a pass at the top of the box and netted his second goal of the year and the Eagles’ first goal of the contest during the 52nd minute.

      Nine minutes later, Skonicki struck again. This time, the midfielder scored off a pass by Jogvan Jacobsen, cutting the Liberty edge to 3-2 at 59:45.

      Agredo restored the Flames’ two-goal lead during the 63rd minute. The forward pounced on a poor clearing attempt by the Winthrop defense and buried a shot into the left side of the net, extending the Liberty lead to 4-2.

      Eagle forward Rasmus Arousell cut the Flames’ advantage to what proved to the final score of 4-3 during the 72nd minute. Arousell turned into the middle of the field and bent a shot from 25 yards out into the net. His third goal of the year cut the Liberty edge to 4-3. Arousell’s goal was the last shot the Flames allowed Winthrop, sealing the victory.

      Liberty outshot Winthrop, 13-10, and held a 7-2 advantage in corner kicks in the contest.

      Flames’ goalkeeper James Knoebel made one save. Perkinson recorded six for the Eagles.

      Liberty returns home for a non-conference match, Tuesday. The Flames will welcome the Dayton Flyers to Osborne Stadium. Match time is scheduled for 6 p.m.

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