Sean de Silva scored 27 seconds into the second overtime period to lift the College of Charleston men’s soccer team to a 2-1 victory over UNC Greensboro in Southern Conference play at the UNCG Soccer Complex on Tuesday night.
The Cougars led, 1-0, for the majority of the match but were not deterred when UNCG equalized seconds before the end of regulation.
After an even, back-and-forth 10-minute first-overtime period, de Silva (Port of Spain, Trinidad) iced the win for the Cougars with a first-class strike 27 seconds into the second overtime.
“This was a great win for our program tonight,” said head coach Ralph Lundy. “Getting a result at UNC Greensboro is never easy. I'm especially proud of the way we fought through adversity after we gave up a late goal to let them back in the match. We must continue to stay focused and fight for one another like we did tonight.”
The Cougars (6-7-0, 2-1-0 SoCon) ended the match with a narrow, 15-14, shot advantage after controlling the possession for the majority of the match.
CofC seized the lead in the 11th minute when Daan Brinkman (Amsterdam, Netherlands) played a ball into the box to an unmarked Troy Peterson (Federal Way, Wash.) who scored from the penalty spot.
The Cougars protected their lead for nearly the remainder of regulation thanks – in part – to six key saves by Cougar keeper Kees Heemskerk (Zaandam, Netherlands).
UNCG would equalize late, however, when they rushed everyone into the box including Peyton Ford, the Spartan keeper who made five saves on the evening, in the dying moments of regulation.
Justin Jones sent a long throw-in into the box where it rattled around before UNCG’s Hakan Ilhan tapped it back outside the top of the penalty area. There, Brian Graham took a shot which found the top corner of the net with just 28 seconds left in regulation.
The first overtime period was evenly played back-and-forth but mostly contained in the central third of the field. Each team managed a shot in the 10-minute period.
Just after the kickoff of the second overtime period, de Silva found some space through the right-center of the field and drove deep towards the Spartan goal. About 10 yards outside of the box, De Silva suddenly pulled up his run and took a left-footed strike which was destined for the upper-right corner of the net and out of Peyton’s reach for the game winner.
The Cougars will now prepare for another test with perennial-powerhouse and defending National Champion No. 2 North Carolina. The Tar Heels will be the eighth team which CofC has played this year which has either been ranked or receiving votes in the NSCAA / Continental Tire Coaches Poll.