Flames Fall To 6th Ranked Auburn Montgomery In OT
Friday, October 12, 2012
With less than three minutes remaining it appeared the Lee men's soccer team would pull off the upset against visiting and 6th-ranked Auburn Montgomery on Thursday afternoon.
After falling behind 1-0 in the first half, the Flames tied the contest at the 65:07 mark on a goal by Sias Reyneke. The score came after it deflected off the body of AUM goalkeeper Vignir Johannesson. Sebastian Vallejo was credited with the assist.
Reyneke came right back to put the Flames on top 2-1 with 69:56 showing on the clock. Lee's defense took control and seemed to be holding the Montgomery club at bay until the final minutes ticked away. All of a sudden, Agust Arnarson broke the hearts of the Lee fans and players after ripping in a shot off a cross to send the contest into the first overtime period, tied at two.
The Flames had at least three chances to put the contest out of reach earlier when three shots hit the bar and kicked away. Shots were almost identical for the entire 102 minutes. AUM had 19 shots and six were on goal. Lee took 16 shots and had nine on target in the rugged Southern States Athletic Conference battle. Both goalkeepers, Tom Halsall and Johannesson, registered three saves apiece.
After a scoreless 10 minutes in the opening overtime and the Flames still suffering from the shock of the tying WarHawk goal, the visitors pulled victory from the jaws of defeat when Arnarson gained possession of the ball off a misplayed cross and drilled it into the back of the net.
The victory allowed AUM to improve to 5-1 in the SSAC race and 10-2-1 overall. The Flames slipped to 3-4 in league action and 7-5-1 overall.
"It was heartbreaking tonight," said coach Paul Furey, who also had sensed victory until the final minutes of regulation. "We had it but couldn't hold it. It is tough when the boys leave it all on the field like they did and then get it taken away from them. I was proud of our effort. I know the boys wanted and expected more."
The Flames will have to regroup quickly and head for Montgomery, Ala. and face Faulkner University on Saturday evening. "We will pull up our socks from here and get ready to go," noted Furey. "I think most can see that this team is coming together and gaining confidence from each match we play."