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Men’s soccer puts on a scoring clinic in first win of the season

The University of North Florida men’s soccer team got their first win of the 2023 season, defeating the Winthrop University Eagles 4-1 on  Friday evening at Hodges Stadium. The Ospreys made quite the halftime adjustment as they scored all four goals in the second half. 

Winthrop came out aggressive early in the first half, with the Eagles attempting three shots within the first 12 minutes of the contest. However, goalkeeper Chema Preciado held Winthrop in check, with two saves in the half that brought the game to a 0-0 stalemate at the end of the first period. 

The game started to operate at a completely different pace entering the second half, as Winthrop made an early statement by scoring the first goal of the contest less than two minutes into the period, with the goal coming thanks to a ricochet shot.

But North Florida wasn’t going down easy. The Ospreys flipped the script offensively with four unanswered goals later in the second half, a complete change from the beginning of the game that led to the 4-1 final score.

After not scoring for the first 58 minutes of the match, the Ospreys scored three goals in the span of five minutes, with two coming from standout North Carolina transfer Luc Granitur. Granitur gave credit to his teammates and game plan execution when asked about his fast start with North Florida. 

“It’s not really me catching fire,” Grantiur said. “The guys have gotten some good balls, good positions, and I’ve made the most of them.”

Granitur also stated that there wasn’t a different approach offensively in the four-goal second half. He reiterated that the game plan was just finally executed. 

“We just executed the game plan that we haven’t the first two games and the first half.” 

When asked about what changed heading into the second half, Head Coach Derek Marinatos gave credit to gaining control of possession as well as a shift in team momentum as the edge the Ospreys needed to come out on top.

“We had a lot of unforced turnovers in the first half,” Marinatos said “We rushed them, we won the ball in good areas, we rushed to give it away, and they’re a good team in transition. We could have been down 2-0 at the half, Winthrop’s a good team, they’re the best team we’ve played in terms of going forward this season so far. Our guys were resilient, we came out in the second half, gave up a goal, and honestly we could’ve laid down. Instead our guys rose and once we scored, the momentum shifted and I thought our guys did a good job.”  

Team momentum shifted positively after the Osprey’s first goal, leading to an explosion on offense (Rachel Bacchus)

The Ospreys improved to 1-1-1 on the season after scoring a season-high four goals. UNF North Florida will look to continue their winning ways at Hodges Stadium as they host St. Thomas University. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. 

More information about North Florida sports can be found on the UNF Athletics Website. 


For more information or news tips, or if you see an error in this story or have any compliments or concerns, contact [email protected]

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About the Contributors
Ethan Howick, Sports Reporter
Ethan Howick is a first-year communications major at the University of North Florida. Ethan has a passion for sports journalism with hopes of becoming a journalist and/or broadcaster for a sports media company someday. During his free time, Ethan enjoys spending time with his family and attending many sporting events with friends.
Rachel Bacchus, General Assignment Reporter
Rachel Bacchus is the current General Assignment Reporter at Spinnaker but also volunteers as a photographer. Rachel is a young photographer and writer working towards her Degree in Multimedia Journalism. She is primarily interested in sports photography and political journalism.

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