BUIES CREEK — Tournament MVP Noah Holmes scored twice to lead High Point to a 2-0 victory over Campbell in the 2022 Big South Conference tournament final Saturday night at the Eakes Athletics Complex.
The second-seeded Panthers (10-4-5) — the only Big South opponent to win on Campbell’s home field the last four years — earned the league’s automatic berth in the NCAA tournament.
For the third time in four years, top-seeded Campbell (11-4-5) and second seed High Point met in the league final, and for the first time the Panthers earned a win.
“I’m the ultimate competitor, I hate to lose, but these guys have to realize that although we didn’t get it done in the final tonight, we can’t lose sight of the whole season,” said Campbell coach Dustin Fonder. “These seniors have done a lot through their four-year careers. We’re regular season champs and faced a ton of adversity with injuries. We’ll learn from it, and we’ll grow from it.”
Holmes scored on a near post header in the 12th minute off Jackson Ruckman’s assist for what proved to be the only goal the Panthers needed.
Despite being out-shot 11-5, the Panthers allowed only two Campbell attempts on target, one in each half. Big South Keeper of the Year Holden Trent posted his seventh shutout of the season.
A graduate transfer from Liberty, Holmes tacked on an insurance strike in the 81st minute after a failed Campbell clearance.
Holmes and Trent were joined on the all-tournament team by midfielder Sebastian Chalbaud and defender Finn McRobb. Kemy Amiche, Kyoji Hata and Tyler Young represented regular-season champion Campbell on the all-tournament squad.
Saturday’s match marked the final home game for 10 Campbell seniors — Diego Konincks, Moses Mensah, Bissafi Dotte, Jamie Lamb, Jalen James, Daniel Hernandez, Kyoji Hata, Adrian Morales, Anass Amrani and Felix Schuster. Mensah, Dotte, James and Morales were members of five league title winning teams.
Big South All-Tournament Team
Noah Holmes, High Point (MVP)
Holden Trent, High Point
Sebastian Chalbaud, High Point
Finn McRobb, High Point
Kyoji Hata, Campbell
Kemy Amiche, Campbell
Tyler Young, Campbell
Luca Bulfon, USC Upstate
Pablo Diaz, USC Upstate
Nacho Gallego, Presbyterian
Carson Griffith, Presbyterian
(Campbell media services provided the basis for this report)