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MLS Player Combine: Team Nemeziz downs Team Copa 4-1 in match day opener

Jan 5, 2019; Orlando, FL, USA; Nils Bruenig (53) works the ball past Dylan Greenberg during the Adidas MLS Soccer Combine at Orlando City SC Stadium. (Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports)

ORLANDO, Fla. — Day 1 of the 2019 MLS Player Combine kicked off Saturday at Orlando City Stadium, and Team Nemeziz clinched a 4-1 victory over Team Copa in the opening match.

Team Nemeziz started the scoring when Orlando native Santiago Patino held the ball and turned around to connect with former Michigan State forward DeJuan Jones on a through-ball, who then struck the ball past Maryland keeper Dayne St. Clair for the 1-0 lead in the 16th minute.

Amar Sejdic (Maryland) doubled the lead for Nemeziz in the 37th minute after Nils Bruening (North Carolina) stole an open ball from St. Clair, finding Sejdic to slot the ball toward an unguarded goal. 

Bruening recorded his goal in the 61st minute after striking a ball off a through-ball from Tucker Bone to increase the lead to 2-0.

“I just want to show myself, do what I can do individually, but also how I can play with the team,” Bruening told Pro Soccer USA shortly after the first game. “I know I can do better. You got 20 minutes to know each other and their names, so it’s challenge, but I’m glad the team did good together.” 

Bruening finished with a goal and an assist Saturday. 

Team Copa broke its scoring drought in the 68th minute when a cross from Joey Piatczyc of West Virginia found Fordham University forward Janos Loebe to strike the ball from close range into the bottom-left corner of the goal. 

Logan Gdula added Nemeziz’s fourth goal in the 72nd minute. The Wake Forest defender rifled a shot from 30-yards outside to cap the scoring. 

The MLS Player Combine continues Monday with closed training sessions and scrimmages before officially concluding on Wednesday.

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