A week after dropping a hard fought battle to No. 20 Kentucky, the Charlotte 49ers men’s soccer team bounced back in a big way against New Mexico at Transamerica Field.
Senior midfielder Brandt Bronico attacked the Lobos early and often. The Lobos were no match for the attack, as they committed four penalties during the game (compared to one penalty for Charlotte). New Mexico’s Jason Beaulieu was given a yellow card at the 14:50 mark, giving the Niners a penalty kick and a chance to get on the board. Bronico did not hesitate as he successfully knocked in the penalty kick. The goal was Bronico’s second of the season.
The next minutes were uneventful, though there was plenty of action. Both teams traded fouls, until the Lobos committed another foul in the 34th minute. Once again, Bronico stepped up and converted another penalty kick, increasing the Niners’ advantage to 2-0 and giving them the momentum they needed going into halftime.
New Mexico was assessed another yellow card when Simon Spangenberg was penalized in the 43rd minute. Then, just as the second half was starting, New Mexico’s Tom Smart was assessed a yellow card. However, less than 10 minutes later, New Mexico’s Niko Hansen scored after receiving a through ball and blasting it past Charlotte’s Elliot Panicco. Despite the change in momentum, Charlotte never wavered and held on to win the game.
Ironically, both teams managed seven total shots throughout the game, with the Lobos holding the advantage in shots on goal (five). New Mexico also held the advantage in corner kicks with six, compared to Charlotte’s four. Charlotte was also flagged for offsides twice during the game. Nevertheless, Bronico’s early scores proved to be the difference makers for the Niners.
Charlotte returns to action on Tuesday, October 11 on the road as they take on the Clemson Tigers. The game will kickoff at 7 pm (ET) and will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra.