UNCP Soccer Squads To Host Montevallo In PBC Doubleheader

PEMBROKE - Both unbeaten UNCP soccer teams are set to battle Peach Belt Conference rival Montevallo in the first doubleheader at home this season on Saturday at Varsity Grounds with the women's game scheduled to begin at 1 p.m., and the men's match to follow.

The UNCP Lady Braves (3-0-1, 1-0-0 PBC) are coming off of a double-overtime tie with region rival Tusculum on Wednesday. Junior goalkeeper Britney Bennett picked up her third shutout of the season as she posted eight saves in the match. Bennett has played 380 minutes in goal and has 16 season saves. She is second in the PBC with a .941 save percentage. Wednesday's tie marked Bennett's 19th career shutout for the Black and Gold.

Sophomore Amalia Arvidsson leads the Lady Braves in points (6), goals (3), shots (19) and game winning goals (3), which ranks her amongst the top-10 in the PBC in the goals and shots.

Arvidsson, Rae-Shawna Campbell and Sherrie Gessin each fared a team-high three shots against the Pioneers. The Lady Braves took 11 shots garnering four shots on goal, giving the team a .429 shots-on-goal percentage for the season.

Montevallo (3-1-1, 0-0-0) is coming off a 2-1 overtime loss against Ala.-Huntsville. The Falcons are led by Nicole Johnson who has scored three goals and Jade Pennock who has notched two more. Kaitlin Thomas has collected 24 saves playing 473:43 minutes in the net.

The Lady Braves are 3-0-1 all-time against Montevallo after a double overtime 1-1 tie last year. In 2010 UNCP took a 2-0 victory over the Falcons in the first round of the PBC Tournament.

No. 15 UNCP (5-0-0, 1-0-0) had five different players record at least one goal for the Braves including junior Martin Tomter who notched his third career hat trick in the 10-0 shutout victory against Chowan on Wednesday. With the win, UNCP currently matches the first time in eight years that the Black and Gold have started its season with five wins. Sam Miles and Sean Hoek each collected two goals, while Brett Luccia, Matt MacDougall and Michael Smith each logged one goal for the Braves. UNCP opened up PBC action on Sept. 7 with a 6-0 victory over Georgia Southwestern. 

Hoek, Miles, and Tomter are tied for second in the PBC with most goals scored, while Smith is tied for first in the league with five assists. Goalkeeper Ryan Hanson sits first in the PBC in save percentage (.917), first in goals against (1) and first in goals against average (0.24). The Black and Gold currently rank 13th nationally in scoring offense, seventh in total goals, seventh in shutout percentage, first in total assists and ninth in save percentage. Individually, Hanson ranks 14th nationally in save percentage and goals against average, while Smith is fifth in total assists.

The Falcons (3-2-0, 0-0-0) opened the season on the road with a 2-1 record before opening up their home stretch. Montevallo suffered a loss to Lincoln Memorial, 1-0, on Sept. 8 but turned the tied around with a 10-0 win over Ala.-Huntsville. Pierre Omanga is tied for sixth in the PBC and leads the team in goals score, while Brendan Ledgeway ranks second in the league in saves (12), saves percentage (.857), goals against (2) and goals against average (0.49).

UNCP and Montevallo will meet for the sixth time today in a series that has been controlled by the Falcons. Montevallo will bring a 2-1-1 series advantage into the game including the most recent victory over the Braves in the 2011 season. During the regular season, the Braves tied up the match in the 83rd minute to send the squads into overtime and ultimately end in a 1-1 decision. However, in the PBC Tournament the Falcons advanced with the win, 1-0, on a penalty kick to advance further into the championships.

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