- Inside Athletics
|1||15:04||Josh Beachler (Taylor)|
|1||17:31||Jad El-Zein (Marygrove)|
|2||47:32||Jad El-Zein (Marygrove)|
|#3 Josh Beachler - 1||Goals||#10 Jad El-Zein - 2|
|#20 Tim Daniels - 1||Assists||#8 Haider Alzayadi - 1|
|#9 Danny Cawley - 3||Shots||#9 Oneil Robinson - 4|
|#1 Michael Williams - 5||Saves||#0 Ryan Plonka - 6|
|11 (7)||Shots (on goal)||12 (7)|
DETROIT, Mich. -- Senior forward Jad El-Zein (Tyre, Lebanon/Fordson) started his final campaign in green & gold with a bang by sending in a pair of goals in the Mustangs 2-1 season-opening victory over NAIA counterpart, Taylor University (Ind.). With the win, fifth year head coach Matt Johnson and the Mustangs (1-0) picked up their first opening day victory since the 2010 campaign.
Early on the first half, the visiting Trojans of Taylor University (0-1) would climb on top after they headed in a goal off a corner kick. The set piece beat freshman keeper Ryan Plonka (St. Clair Shores, Mich./Macomb CC) in the 15th minute.
Plonka and the Mustangs would regroup quickly to return the favor.
In the 17th minute, El-Zein – donning the captain's "C" – shocked everyone in attendance with an amazing bicycle kick for the 1-1 equalizer. The game-tying goal would give the Mustangs key momentum as they shut down the Taylor attack to head into the half knotted up.
Second half action would pick up quickly in the 47th minute as El-Zein struck again. This time, the senior headed a ball past the Trojans' keeper off a free-kick assist from Haider Alzayadi (Simawa, Iraq/Wayne State University). The outstanding set piece would be all the Mustangs needed as Alzayadi and El-Zein would later be credited with the game-winning tally in the 2-1 victory.
After giving up an early goal, Plonka settled in and came up huge for the Mustangs in his first career start as a collegiate keeper. In total, Plonka turned away six Trojan shots to earn his first victory.
The Mustangs will travel to play the Spring Arbor Cougars on Aug. 30 at 7:00 p.m. The Cougars, a team who received votes in the NAIA's Preseason Top-25, will be another tough test early on for Johnson and the Mustangs.