Sailfish and Spartans Battle in Defensive Struggle
October 6, 2009
Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University Sports Information Director
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.- Making up the first of two rain-out dates from earlier in the season against Sunshine State Conference opponents, the Palm Beach Atlantic University men’s soccer team welcomed the University of Tampa into the friendly confines of Magic Jack Field on Tuesday afternoon for an important regional match for both squads. After trailing 1-0, the #3-ranked Spartans charged back for two second-half goals including the game-winner with just seven minutes remaining in regulation.
Remaining undefeated at now 7-0-1, the Spartans were coming off an exciting overtime victory over then #1-ranked Lynn University in their previous outing while PBA made easy work of Florida Memorial University by a 6-0 score in their previous match last Saturday.
After an uneventful first-half saw both defenses dominate to the tune of seven total shots between the two squads including four by the Sailfish, the second-half would provide offensive opportunities for both teams.
PBA senior Johnathon Clark came away with the game’s first score as he received a cross into the box from fellow senior Chance Sumner; Clark proceeded to change direction and then put a nice shot to the far post for a 1-0 PBA lead.
It would be just under two minutes for the Spartans to respond as Pascal Milien delivered a shot just past PBA keeper Joe Yurchak as a deflection allowed the ball to roll in just under the 69th minute.
Unfortunately for PBA, another deflection and a another Milien score would result in the Spartans leaving town with a victory and continue their unblemished record. Milien delivered a shot in the 83rd minute that came off a pair of PBA defenders and just beyond the reach of Yurchak and rolled toward the mouth of the goal. Despite their best efforts, PBA’s last defender effort just missed being able to clear the ball before it crossed the line for the game-winning goal.
After being outshot in the first-half, UT came back and landed 10 shots in the second-half compared to that of only four by the Fish. PBA held the advantage in corner kicks for the match at 6-4 while UT was whistled for 10 fouls and the Fish only eight.
Tampa goal keeper Ryan Thompson earned the victory while making two saves while Yurchak made six saves in defeat.
Now 5-4-1 on the season and currently holding a #9-regional ranking, the Sailfish will head north to Winter Park, Florida for their next match which will be a Rollins College and PBA soccer double-header on Saturday, October 10th. The men’s teams play at 4:30 p.m. while the women’s teams suit up at approximately 6:30 p.m. Both games will be aired live and podcasted on the Sailfish Sports Network.