Today: Apr 14, 2024

Owls pull off miraculous win in OT by scoring two late goals

Sean Meenaghan  — Photo Editor
Senior captain Paul Templeton (left) scored the game-winning goal in OT.

RYANN IANNI — Staff Writer 

Losing 2-0 with only five minutes remaining, it looked like it was going to be a fourth straight loss for the SCSU men’s soccer team Saturday, Oct. 8, against the St. Anselm Hawks. However, just 12 minutes later the Owls made a miraculous comeback to win the game 3-2 in overtime.

It seemed like it would be another long night for the Owls as they gave up their first goal just six minutes into the first half. What looked like a slow and poorly taken corner kick somehow ended up at the foot of Anselm midfielder George Lamptey, who made a small flick with his foot that looped into the net.

“I think we just fell asleep in the box,” said SCSU senior and goalkeeper, Andrew Esposito. “We got caught ball-watching, let their guy get to the ball first. [He got] a little flick, and you just see us all left stranded. So I think we all just fell asleep; we weren’t expecting it.”

The Hawks controlled the majority of possession; combined with a stingy defense, the Owls couldn’t break them down.

The 28th minute saw Southern go from hopeful to downtrodden in a matter of seconds. A through-ball from junior Matan Bik to senior forward Cedric Panzu gave SCSU their first scoring opportunity; the shot was saved by Anselm goalkeeper Eric Moriarty. Just 30 seconds later, St. Anselm gained a corner kick, where the ball was sent to a completely unmarked forward, Joshua Rocco, who flicked the ball mid-flight to increase the margin to 2-0.

The second half started off poorly for the Owls, as a foul in the 48th minute on Panzu resulted in a yellow card for St. Anselm’s Kevin Greene. Panzu was down for several minutes before he slowly walked off the field and did not return for the rest of the game.

“He’s got a separated shoulder,” said SCSU head coach Tom Lang. “Who knows when he’ll be back.”

The 86th minute is when the Owls finally had something to cheer about. A ball down the right flank to junior Julian Myers, gave him time to cross to sophomore defender Jon Eckford, whose shot took a big deflection off an Hawks player into the net.

Seconds after play restarted, SCSU regained possession thorough junior Luke Perry, who slotted a pass to sophomore forward Doural Scott, who then had a one-on-one opportunity with Moriarty and chipped the ball over him to tie the game.

“With 10 minutes to go,” said senior captain Paul Templeton, “a lot of teams would have gave up, but we stuck to our task well.”

Once the game proceeded into extra time, both teams had golden opportunities to win; with St. Anselm missing a point-blank header just two minutes in, and Bik having his shot parried away just two minutes later.

However, after seven minutes the Owls would not be denied as sophomore forward Ariel Lobo sent a cross into the box that rose over everyone’s heads. Templeton out-jumped everyone, connected with the ball and smashed it in for the miraculous comeback win.

The mob of his teammates piling on him then ensued as Southern snapped their three-game losing streak. SCSU improved to 5-5 with a 4-3 record in the conference and will play an away game at AIC Tuesday.

“I don’t think we ever lost faith,” said Templeton, “you just need to keep knocking on the door. You need to keep working hard when the chips are down, and I think the boys did that today.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog