JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Appalachian State University men’s soccer freshman Camden Holbrook (Cary, N.C./Green Hope) netted a hat trick scoring three goals in the Mountaineers’ thrilling 3-2 overtime victory over Jacksonville on Friday evening at Southern Oak Stadium.
The Mountaineers picked up their first season-opening win since 2012 while it was the first victory on the road to open the campaign since 2008. App improves to 2-1-1 in overtime matches under head coach Jason O’Keefe.
“Great team effort tonight” coach O’Keefe said. “Give Credit to JU for showing some resiliency in the last 10 minutes to get back in the game. We showed some tremendous grit by our young team to pick themselves up and get the game-winner in OT on the road. We will regenerate and turn our focus to North Florida on Sunday night.”
Facing the A-Sun Tournament runner-ups and a squad that finished 6-3-1 in its last 10 matches last season, the Mountaineers knew they were in for a tough test. Jacksonville would score two goals in the last 10 minutes of the second half facing a 2-0 deficit to force overtime. At the 99′ mark, Reed Hunnicutt (Charlotte, N.C./South Mecklenburg) found Holbrook for the game-winning score, making the Cary, N.C., native the first Mountaineer since Arie Muniz in 2009 to net a hat-trick.
Up until the Dolphins’ first score, the Mountaineers had dominated the hosts with the 2-0 lead following Holbrook’s second score thanks to an assist from Parker Washburn (Cary, N.C./Guerin Catholic). It didn’t take long for the Apps to get on the board in the opening stanza, as Dimitris Moraitakis’ (Athens, Greece/Greece) assist to Holbrook for his first-career goal that gave App the 1-0 edge in the first 25 minutes of the match.
Appalachian was on the attack all evening, doubling up on JU in shots on goal, 10-5, while App took 15 shots total. Holbrook posted four of his six attempts on target, while six other Mountaineers fired away a SOG. Felix Kollmannthaler (Frankfurt, Germany/Gymnasium Feuchtwangen), Zeiko Harris (Sandys Parish, Bermuda/South Kent), and Jake Chasteen (Boone, N.C./Watauga) played all 100 minutes. Chasteen earned the nod between the posts and stopping three shots. The Mountaineers also held a 7-4 advantage in corner kicks.
For Moraitakis and Washburn, it was the first assists of the career while Hunnicutt tallied the fourth helper of his career.
App will look for its first back-to-back road wins since 2016 on Sunday when it takes on North Florida at 7 p.m. The Ospreys fell to Mercer in their season opener on Friday evening.