Men's Soccer Edged by Emmanuel in Overtime Thriller

Photo by Ron Waite/Photosportacular
Photo by Ron Waite/Photosportacular

Boston, Mass. – The Albertus Magnus College men's soccer team suffered a 3-2 overtime setback at Emmanuel on Saturday afternoon in GNAC action at Clemente Field. With their second straight overtime loss, the Falcons move to 4-2 overall and 1-1 in league play, while the Saints improve to 3-3 on the year and 2-0 in conference tilts.

With just over one minute remaining in the first overtime, Emmanuel senior David Field found himself deep in Falcon territory, driving the ball to the visitor's endline. The California native hit a low ball with pace into the Albertus Magnus six-yard box and amidst the action, a Falcon defender inadvertently deflected the ball into the net for an own goal to send the Saints off with a 3-2 win.

With the hosts trailing 2-1 late in regulation, Stefano Sainato knotted the contest and force extra time with his fourth goal of the campaign with only 5:56 left in the second half. The senior was the beneficiary of a low cross by Field redirecting the ball into the back of the net to even the score at 2-2.

Emmanuel had a chance to win the game just before the regulation horn as junior Colin O'Donnell found himself on a semi-break away on the right side of the pitch but his shot with two seconds left on the clock was denied by Falcons sophomore goalkeeper Griffin Volta (Orange, Conn.) to send the game into overtime.

Playing in their second consecutive extra session affair, both the Saints and the Falcons came out aggressively.  Emmanuel got off a shot on goal just 26 seconds into the action and Albertus would answer less than a minute later with an attempt from 25 yards out by senior midfielder Jesse Plona (Trumbull, Conn.) that was wide. After the early shots, the overtime session became very physical with several fouls called in a short period of time.

The Saints got on the board very early in the action with Sainato's first goal of the day just 2:16 into regulation. Sainato used a through ball from junior forward Jordan Maurer to get past the AMC back line before chipping the shot over Volta to give Emmanuel the 1-0 lead.

Albertus Magnus tied the score during the 27th minute of play on the first goal of the year by sophomore forward Ritchy Jean Pierre (Fairfield, Conn.). Pierre ran through a ball played deep in the Emmanuel box by junior Alexis Garcia-Romero (West Haven, Conn.) and beat Saints senior keeper James Withers to even the score at 1-1.

The Falcons took the lead at 2-1 at 56:44 on a direct kick struck by junior Alex Zapata (Hamden, Conn.). Zapata was pulled down just outside the Saints' 18-yard box and on the restart, curved a right-footed strike around the Emmanuel wall and into the upper third of the frame for his team-leading fifth goal of the year.

Withers notches the win making six saves in goal for Emmanuel, while Volta suffers the loss despite a seven save outing for Albertus Magnus.

Albertus held a slight, 19-14, advantage in shots and Emmanuel took seven corners compared to six for the Falcons. The physical contest saw 29 fouls whistled and three yellow cards handed out.

All six of the men's soccer games this fall have been decided by one goal.

Albertus returns to action on Wednesday, September 23 with a home non-conference clash versus in-state rival Mitchell. The tilt with the mariners is slated to get underway at 4:00 pm and will be streamed live online.