ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. -- The Covenant men's soccer team scored in the second minute to grab an early lead, but host N.C. Wesleyan responded in a big way as the Battling Bishops defeated the Scots, 5-1, on Friday afternoon in USA South action at Scalf Field.
The loss was the first road defeat of the year for Covenant (7-5-1, 4-2-1 USA South).
Carl Simakoff gave Covenant an early 1-0 lead as he scored in the second minute of play. Simakoff's fourth goal of the year came from short range as he collected a deflection and angled his shot past N.C. Wesleyan keeper Tobias Borzel for the score.
From that point on, however, the host Bishops controlled play. Aazah Daniel produced a hat trick and added an assist to lead the way for N.C. Wesleyan. Daniel scored his first goal of the match in the eighth minute when he recovered a rebound off a Paul Lemay save and deposited the ball into the net to even the score at 1-1. Daniel than added both goals for the Bishops in the second half to put the match out of reach for the Scots.
N.C. Wesleyan (4-4, 4-1 USA South) took the lead for good in the 16th minute when Matteo Costa notched his third goal of the year to make it 2-1, assisted by Daniel. The Bishops took a 3-1 lead entering halftime after Lorenzo Cocchia scored an unassisted goal in the 43rd minute.
For the match, N.C. Wesleyan outshot Covenant 18-8. Ethan Pettit led the Scots with two shots taken, while Costa took five for the Bishops.
Lemay made six saves for Covenant, while Henry Hooks came on for the final 30 minutes and made one save. Borzel got the win at the net for N.C. Wesleyan and tallied three saves in 75 minutes of action.
Covenant will have a quick turnaround as the Scots travel to Fayetteville, N.C., on Saturday to take on Methodist. The USA South contest is set for a 7 p.m. start.
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