Whittier lets Eagles slip by in overtime
Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – One foul and one set piece in overtime was all it took for Concordia (Calif.) University to find the game winner on Saturday night at the Graham Soccer Field.
The Poets had seized momentum throughout the second half behind the solid goaltending of David Diaz. The junior keeper made six saves in the second frame and totaled 10 for the game but needed an 11th to keep the purple and gold in the contest.
Whittier was whistled for a foul just 30 seconds into the start of the extra period and the Eagles took advantage.
Armando Padilla played the ball inside the box and Alex Picarelli found it in traffic as he snuck it past the outstretched arms of Diaz.
Whittier got down early after the Eagles scored at the 27:50 mark but the Poets showed their resilience. Jorge Figueroa started the play from the far wing and found the head of 6-foot, 3-inch, Joshua Dredge.
The Rangiora, New Zealand, native played a perfect one touch header to the middle of the box where freshman Jamie Manning collected his first collegiate goal. The play resulted in the rare double assist for Figueroa and Dredge.
The equalizer came in the 40th minute.
Neither team broke through the other's defense in the second half despite combining for 24 shots. The Eagles had the first real opportunity of the second half but Diaz stood strong on consecutive shots.
Carlos Suarez had a run at net but was turned away at the top of the box by a sliding Diaz. The Eagles recovered the rebound and tried to lob the ball over the out-positioned goalie but Diaz recovered in time to keep the game level.
The Poets (2-2) put pressure on CUI goalie Mike Radchuk late in the game but couldn't find the frame. Srdan Jovanovic saw his header go wide left at the 86:26 mark and Jonathan Palomino's had the same results at 89:21.
Jovanovic got his first real look in the 78th minute but Radchuk made the save.
The Poets return to action on Wednesday, September 15, as they host Pomona-Pitzer in the SCIAC opener.