Battle of Defenses Results In 0-0 Draw For Florida Tech Soccer Against Lynn
By Florida Tech // October 21, 2015
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – The defenses showed up to Rick Stottler Field on Tuesday night. Behind strong efforts from both backlines and timely saves by their respective goalkeepers, Florida Tech and Lynn played to a 0-0 double-overtime draw in a rare non-conference match between both programs.
“I credit Lynn for coming out on our home field and taking it to us early on,” said head coach Dustin Smith.
“I give them all the credit in the world, they’re a tough team and fought hard. Their record definitely doesn’t indicate the type of team they are, they’re dangerous. All in all, I think a draw was a fair result.”
Lynn came out with crisp passing, demonstrating a steady offensive attack in the early going. Fighting Knights’ midfielder Jamie Perriello nearly opened the scoring in the seventh minute, but her strike ricocheted off the crossbar and out of bounds.
After being clearly outplayed for the majority of the first half, Florida Tech finally gained some traction towards the latter portion of the opening 45 minutes.
The Panthers logged their first shot nearly 42 minutes into the match on a ball struck by Ali Tebo, but were turned away by Lynn keeper Alexa Downie for one of her five saves on the night.
“I think they adjusted the way they play tactically tonight,” Smith said in reference to his team’s slow start.
“That’s what you do when you play a team twice in a three or four week period. We made some adjustments, they made some adjustments. So what it ultimately came down to in the end was who had more heart, who wanted it more.”
In the 52nd minute, a perfect cross on the ground by Jazelle Russack-Cradeur to Keira McCarthy appeared to set up the game’s first score, but was wiped off the board on an offside call from the linesman.
Roughly 20 minutes later, McCarthy found herself one-on-one with Downie in front of the net but her shot sailed high, keeping the score knotted up at zeroes.
In extra time, chances remained tough to come by as both clubs combined for just three shots in the first overtime period.
However, Lynn’s Brianna Lemerise nearly decided the outcome in the 103rd minute on a bending shot to the far post. Making a full extension dive, Julia Kantor corralled the ball to keep the Panthers in the game.
“Massive,” Smith said when asked about the save.
“About two minutes before, we could’ve won the game but their keeper made a tremendous save. For Jules (Kantor) to respond and make a fantastic save like that to keep us in it was unbelievable. That’s what lifts this team and why she’s the kind of player she is, leading by example.”
Lynn forced the pressure in the late stages of the second overtime with three consecutive corner kicks in the final 3:18 of the match, but like it has done for most of the season, the Florida Tech defense rose to the occasion to preserve the draw.
With yet another shutout, Kantor has regained the SSC lead now with eight on the year.
FIT will welcome Tampa to Rick Stottler Field this Saturday at 7 p.m. ET, marking the Panthers’ final game of the regular season.
FIT’s five seniors will be recognized prior to the opening kickoff.
Live coverage will be available at FloridaTechSports.com/live.