A pair of Bruins made their comebacks Saturday night.
Freshman midfielder Matt Hundley started for the first time since Sept. 27, while junior forward Mohammed Kamara played in his first game since Sept. 30 in UCLA men’s soccer’s (9-4, 4-1 Pac-12) home win against LMU (5-9, 2-1 WCC). The duo combined for three goals and two assists to help lead the Bruins to a 4-1 victory.
Hundley got the starting assignment after coming off the bench the past four games. He tallied two goals and an assist in 77 minutes of play – more than his playing time in his previous two appearances combined.
“I just wanted to prove and show what I can do for this team,” Hundley said. “Hopefully I’ll be able to get more starts.”
Hundley scored two goals in the season opener against Coastal Carolina on Aug. 24, but had just one goal in 11 games since. His goals Saturday were his first since Sept. 16, and the assist was his sixth of the season.
“Hundley hadn’t started in the last few games, but he came in and was one of the better players on the night,” said coach Jorge Salcedo. “He had a big impact on our attack. Obviously some good goals and it was really nice for him to come in and contribute the way he did.”
Kamara, meanwhile, returned from an injury that forced him to miss the past three games. Despite playing just 37 minutes off the bench in his return against LMU, he added a goal of his own and an assist to Hundley in the 32nd minute.
The goal was also Kamara’s first since Sept. 8.
“Obviously, it was important to come back and score a goal,” Kamara said. “I’ve been injured for some time and coming back today, my first time playing after being injured for two to three weeks and then getting a goal, I thought it was really important.”
Hundley and Kamara are now tied for the team lead in goals scored with five apiece, despite their recent absences from the starting lineup.
The two players helped the Bruins outshoot the Lions 17-4 on Saturday and win their fourth straight match heading into the second half of Pac-12 play.
“I thought it was a really good performance from the team,” Kamara said. “Individually and as a team, I thought everybody, including me and some of the other guys that came off the bench, performed really well.”