NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Lipscomb men’s soccer team continued to roll by defeating North Florida 1-0 on Sunday afternoon in Atlantic Sun Conference action at the Lipscomb Soccer Complex.
For much of the game the score was tied 0-0, but if you were watching what was happening on the field if felt like the Bisons were dominating play.
Lipscomb had season highs in shots (22) and shots on goal (11). It was the most in each category since the Bisons last played UNF in 2012, when the Purple and Gold fired 25 shots including 14 on net.
The offense has been clicking lately for Lipscomb head coach Charles Morrow’s group, but today the defense was just as impressive recording the fourth shutout of 2013.
“It was a complete game,” Morrow said. “Other than the one good opportunity we gave up in the first half, we did a good job of shutting them down.”
Shut them down is what the Bisons did by only allowing a season low five shot attempts. It took the Ospreys over 27 minutes before being able to strike a ball towards the goal.
The game was scoreless into the 68th minute when the Bisons made a run and Matt Kerridge was tripped up just outside of the box, awarding a free kick to Lipscomb.
That set the table for Atlantic Sun Conference goals leader Omar Djabi, who stepped up and played the ball through the wall and into the net for his eighth score of the year.
“Those are the moments he (Djabi) doesn’t shy away from,” Morrow said. “He is a guy who really embraces and likes the challenge.”
“Omar is having a great year, but what gets lost in the stats is how hard the team is working around him to get those chances. It was a great team win.”
The strike was Djabi’s fourth game-winning goal of the year- and he leads the A-Sun in that category.
For a majority of the match, the ball stayed on the Bisons end of the field. Morrow believes the rotation that played caused a mismatch and he did not want to alter what his team was showing.
“We did not make many subs at all,” Morrow said. “The guys we had in the game had the answer to unlocking North Florida’s defense.
“We felt that if we made too many subs, we would disrupt the rhythm. We stuck with what we had and it paid off in the end result.”
With the win, Lipscomb improves to 7-5-1, 3-1-0. The seven wins through 13 games matches the win total of 2012. The 3-1 mark in conference is the best start since the 2007 squad that went 4-1 to start league play.
The loss for North Florida drops its record to 4-4-2, 0-2-1.
One highlight of the day for the Ospreys was the goalkeeper Brad Sienkiewicz. He collected 10 saves on 22 shots.
Bisons goalkeeper Micah Bledsoe stopped all four of the Ospreys shots on goal bringing his save total to 46. The freshman also collected his third shutout of the season, which places him second in conference.
With the win, the Bisons sit tied for second in the A-Sun standings a game behind conference leader Florida Gulf Coast.
“We want to be one of those teams that get a bye in the conference tournament,” Morrow said. “We control our own destiny and to pick up two conference wins this weekend is huge.”
The Bisons get back to action on Saturday Oct. 19 when Northern Kentucky visits the Lipscomb Soccer Complex for a 7 p.m. kickoff.
“Weekends like this are great because they build confidence and belief,” Morrow said. “We are certainly happy for the weekend we have had, but we’re already looking forward to Northern Kentucky.”