When things are going right, they’re going right and the Florida Tech Panthers found that out Saturday when they got a lucky bounce in overtime to beat the Embry-Riddle Eagles in a Sunshine State Conference men’s soccer showdown.
With the game tied at one and the game 28 seconds into overtime, Toby Cassidy tried to clear the ball for the Eagles and it ended up hitting Brandon Smalley of the Panthers and bounding past Embry-Riddle netminder Richard Dearle for the game-winning tally.
With the victory, the 24th ranked Panthers notched their fifth straight win and moved to 7-1 overall. They kept their unblemished conference record intact, at 4-0 and improved to 4-0 on the road.
Things didn’t look good early, as the Panthers were whistled for a penalty at the 35:31 mark when Daniel Gylfason was taken down in the box. The penalty kick was awarded and Magnus Magnusson made the Panthers pay, as he fired it by Panthers goalie Christopher Page.
Solomon Wheatley, who has provided a spark for the Panthers during this win streak, did so again Saturday, with time winding down in the contest. With less than six minutes left, Wheatley beat Dearle, to tie things up at 1-1. It was the third goal in as many games for Wheatley, not counting the one he had wiped off the board in a postponed game against Saint Leo.
Unfortunately, FIT’s Jan Halvica picked up a red card with 1:07 left in the contest and will not play in the Panthers next game. It was the fifth booking of the night for Florida Tech overall, but the only red card. Magnusson picked up a yellow card a short time later, but that was only the second of the night on the Eagles.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Embry-Riddle Box Score
The Panthers outshot ERAU 15-9, with 10 of those shots coming in the second half. Each team had four shots on goal. Page made all three of his saves in the first half.
Florida Tech returns home Tuesday, October 10 to host the Saint Leo Lions. The game is a make-up from the postponement on September 29. The Panthers were up 2-0 when the game was called, but the two teams will start Tuesday’s game at 0-0. The game will get underway at 6:00 p.m. EDT.
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