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Men's Soccer Stumbles In OT vs. Eastern Nazarene

Men's Soccer Stumbles In OT vs. Eastern Nazarene

NEW LONDON, Conn. – Eastern Nazarene College scored in the third minute of overtime to post a 3-2 victory over Mitchell College on Saturday afternoon in a New England Collegiate Conference men's soccer match at Alumni Field.

Sebastian Arboleda netted the golden goal just 2:38 into the extra frame to give the Lions their first win of the season. Sunil Lepacha and Kirby Georgeon also found the back of the net on the day for Eastern Nazarene (1-6-0 overall), which was making its conference debut as one of two NECC newcomers in 2018.

William Ferguson and Dylan Thambirasa each recorded goals for the Mariners, who dropped to 2-4-0 overall. Mitchell had won its last nine games against conference opponents entering the contest.

Both teams had leads in the game, but neither side could hold them for very long. In the first half, Lepacha put the Lions on the scoreboard in the seventh minute with his first tally of the season. Just over three minutes later, Mitchell answered when a foul in the box yielded a penalty kick that Ferguson converted to make it 1-1. The goal was his second of the year.

The score remained deadlocked until early in the second half when Jhan Carlos Bermeo chipped a ball over the ENC back line that Thambirasa tracked down and poked past goalkeeper Victor Mendoza for his first collegiate goal. Mitchell held the lead for less than a minute as Georgeon finished off a loose ball in the box—his first marker of the season—to knot the game at 2-2.

The final 15 minutes of regulation yielded several quality scoring chances for ENC, all of which were denied. Daniel Hotaling and Karl Theodore each cleared away shots on the Mitchell goal line while keeper Seth Strader provided a diving stop and a tip save to keep the score even.

Eastern Nazarene had the better of possession in overtime and quickly produced the game-winning score. Prem Subedi had the ball at the top of the 18-yard box and fired a shot that was blocked by a defender. The ball deflected to Arboleda on the left side, and he buried his attempt for his second marker of the season.

ENC held a 24-12 advantage in shots. Mendoza finished with four saves while Florian Resch didn't face a shot in the final 11:35 of the victory. Strader made nine saves in the loss.

Mitchell will next play at Coast Guard Academy on Wednesday, September 26 at 6 p.m. Eastern Nazarene returns to action at Northern Vermont University-Johnson on Tuesday, September 25 at 4 p.m.