NEWBERRY — The Newberry Men’s Soccer team lost a tight match with the USC Aiken Pacers by a score of 1-0 on Tuesday evening at the Smith Road Complex.
USC Aiken (1-1-0) scored the only goal of the match in the 43rd minute when Jordan Misiri made a run down the left side of the field. The Pacers forward managed to maintain possession despite facing hard challenges from the Wolves and eventually scored.
Newberry started strong in the second half and had several attempts to equalize. First in the 51st minute, Ibrahim Nadir had control of the ball going towards the Pacers goal with Fabrizio Bucco to his right and Christian Thomas on his left. Nadir attempted a through ball to Thomas but the pass was intercepted by the Pacers to end the run.
Moments later in the 52nd minute, freshman Ulrik Kaupang found himself open at the top right of the Pacers box but his shot sailed just over the goal. Newberry out-shot the Pacers 14-10 and had seven corner kicks in the game but couldn’t capitalize.
“We started off slow again, but as the game progressed we got better and had more efficient possessions,” Head Coach Bryce Cooper said after the match. “We told our guys that we need to start faster and start putting a total performance together.”
The Wolves will be looking to rebound following the loss when they make the trip to Florida for two matchups against No. 9 Palm Beach Atlantic and Florida Southern of the Sunshine State Conference.
“We knew when we made the schedule that this was going to be a tough weekend, especially traveling as far as we are,” Cooper stated. “It does give us a chance to remove some of the distractions and spend some time as a team to focus on each opponent. Palm Beach Atlantic is going to be a good challenge for us on Friday night, but we’re confident. We know we can play with anybody. Florida Southern is another great team that plays a lot differently, but we know what to expect. Both sides are going to be difficult matchups overall, but if we can get back to what we do well in terms of moving the ball quickly, getting numbers forward, and cleaning up the mistakes we’re going to have a great chance in both games.”