Soccer Downs Wright State In Double Overtime, 2-1|
Oct. 27, 2003
Chicago, Ill.- After cloudy skies lurked over Flames Field for two regulation periods and an overtime session on Monday afternoon, bright rays of sunshine made an appearance just before the second overtime began.
Maybe it was a sign of things to come for the UIC men's soccer team.
Freshman Eric Cervantes launched a rocket shot that blasted through Wright State goalkeeper Jeff Hubbard's fingertips and into the net in the 104th minute as the Flames defeated the Raiders, 2-1, in double overtime on Senior Day.
UIC (10-4-2, 3-2-2 Horizon League) secured sole possession of fourth place in the league standings with the victory and will compete as the fourth seed in the Horizon League Tournament quarterfinals on Saturday, November 8th. Wright State (9-7-0, 3-4-0 Horizon League) fell into the fifth spot in the conference.
The first period was a defensive battle, with both teams going scoreless heading into halftime. Wright State, which entered the game leading the Horizon League in least goals allowed with a mere five scores tallied against the Raiders in six conference matches, continued their defensive dominance in the first 45 minutes against the Flames.
UIC finally broke through in the second period. Quick passing between Jason Kieffer and Dennis King set up Roberto Gallo's one-on-one breakaway score against Hubbard in the 68th minute to give the Flames the 1-0 lead. Kieffer and King earned assists on the goal.
Wright State evened the score in the 78th minute, when Jon McClain sent a cross to Jason Tackis, who headed in the pass past UIC keeper Ross Cain to tie the game.
The game returned to a slow, defensive pace that mirrored the first period, remaining that way for the rest of regulation and through the first overtime until Cervantes booted the ball past Hubbard for the unassisted golden goal in the final overtime.
Wright State dominated statistically, outshooting the Flames 28-14 while taking an astounding 14-1 corner kick advantage, but the Raiders could not get anything going against the UIC defense led by Cain and his seven saves.
The Flames took time to honor their seniors at halftime, who played their final regular-season home match on Monday. Seniors King, Pete Kelley, Josh Robinson, Chris Berena, Nate Day, and Chris Pipis were recognized by head coach Sasha Begovic and their families for their outstanding contributions to the UIC soccer program during a Senior Day ceremony.
The Flames are back in action this Friday, October 31st, as they travel to San Luis Obispo, Calif., to take on Cal-Poly at 9:30 p.m.