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By Jordean Matthews
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - The No. 19 UCF men's soccer team opened its regular season with a 2-1 win over Jacksonville Sunday night at the Ashley Sports Complex. Sophomore McKauly Tulloch's (Kingston, Jamaica) goal in the 77th minute gave UCF the advantage over the Dolphins to start the season off on a positive note.
"The team showed great maturity out there today," head coach Bryan Cunningham said. "To win on the road against a very good team like Jacksonville is a great way to start the season."
Knights' forward A.J. Nelson (Ponte Vedra, Fla.) scored the first tally for the Black and Gold just five minutes after JU's Taylor Williams put the Dolphins ahead, 1-0. Nelson's goal came from a header in the middle of the box and brought the game into a tie in the 43rd minute with junior Nik Robson (Auckland, New Zealand) collecting the assist.
The Knights came out strong in the second half dominating much of the period taking eight shots and five corner kicks. Tulloch took a team high four shots for UCF including two wide shots in the 72nd and 73rd minutes before netting a goal to put the Knights up 2-1. Senior Warren Creavalle (Acworth, Ga.) collected the assist.
"Our leadership came through for us in the second half," Cunningham added. "We were able to create a lot of chances. We finally took advantage of it late in the second half and were able to come out with the win. These guys worked hard for this and it was a great way to start the season."
UCF goal keeper Shawn Doyle (Ft. Myers, Fla.) played the full 90 minutes and put aside four shots.
The Knights return to action Sept. 2 at home against UMass beginning at 7 p.m. Individual game tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for youth and seniors. For just $75, Knights fans will receive season tickets to both soccer programs as well as volleyball in the fall and every softball game and track & field meet in the spring.
The 2011 Gold Pass is on sale now and can be purchased online at UCFAthletics.com, over the phone by calling (407) UCF-1000 or by visiting the Bright House Networks Stadium Ticket Office.