Soccer Loses Overtime Heartbreaker To UMKC, 3-2|
Oct. 13, 2004
Chicago, Ill.- Despite Tonci Skroce's game-tying heroics in the the 88th minute on Wednesday, the University of Illinois at Chicago soccer team suffered a rare home defeat at the hands of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, 3-2, in an overtime slobberknocker at Flames Field.
An indirect free kick by UMKC's Brian Garcia four minutes into overtime was able escape the grasp of UIC keeper Roman Tulis and give the Flames their first home loss of the season.
UIC (3-9-1, 2-2-1 Horizon League) played the final minutes of regulation and the four minutes of overtime without two key defenders in senior co-captain Adam Jones and Sam Reindl, who both suffered leg injuries and had to leave the contest.
The Flames battled UMKC (2-7-0, 1-1-0 Mid-Continent) in a game of keep-away in the first half, as both defenses were busy in turning away any sort of offensive attack.
The scoring picked up early in the second period. Kenneth Nightingale took a pass from Tulis and found a streaking Pawel Otachel on the left side. Otachel then put up a quick cross to Eric Cervantes, who fought through a crowd in front of the goal and chipped it in past UMKC goalkeeper Todd Dohlman for the early 1-0 lead.
UIC had other outstanding opportunities to score, none more close than a chance in the 67th minute. Nightingale found Cervantes on a breakaway and made a hanging pass that allowed Cervantes a one-on-one opportunity with the keeper. As Kangaroo defenders closed in, Cervantes hurried the shot and left it to the right of the post.
UMKC struck back, scoring two times within an eight-minute span. Ali Dorri's free kick reached Blake Martin, who was waiting in front of the UIC goal, and Martin knocked it past Tulis to knot the match.
About eight minutes later, a UIC turnover was taken to the right side by John Clark. Clark found Perkins on the other side, and Perkins made an extra pass to Justin Judiscak that the UMKC senior was able to knock in with his left foot for a 2-1 Kangaroos advantage.
The game looked bleak until Nightingale had a free kick from the right side. Dohlman made a good save of Nightingale's attempt, but the ball fell out of the keeper's grasp and onto the foot of an aware Skroce, who kicked in the easy rebound goal to tie the game and send it into overtime.
The goal marked the first time since Sept. 12th that Skroce, a versatile player who has played midfield, defense and forward for the Flames, has scored.
Tulis made seven saves in the contest for UIC.
UIC is now 1-1-1 in extra-period games this season.
The Flames resume their homestand this Sunday against 25th-ranked Memphis at Flames Field beginning at 1 p.m.