Late goal sees FGCU lose 2-1 to NJIT in ASUN Championship
By Chase Henry
A late goal in the 86th minute saw the FGCU’s men’s soccer team (9-8-2) lose to the New Jersey Institute of Technology (10-4-4) in New Jersey, Saturday night, by a score of 2-1.
FGCU was already at a disadvantage before the start of the match, as midfielder Ryan Medilah was suspended for his yellow-card accumulation in the ASUN Semi-Finals against the University of North Florida.
In the first 20 minutes of action, the Eagles had four shots on goal, three of those coming by way of Ivan Rosales.
During this same period, NJIT had three shots on target at the Eagles’ goal, causing Connor Gavigan to make two saves.
Through the final 25 minutes of the first half, FGCU appeared to be in control of the game with the Eagles registering two more shots on target before Noah Bushey lofted a shot into the far post of the Highlanders goal with his left foot to give FGCU a 1-0 lead with 12 seconds left in the first half.
FGCU picked up where it left off in the first half, having full control of the match following the halftime break. Jahan Rajaee had a good chance to double the Eagles’ lead as he intercepted a pass from the NJIT goalkeeper in a bad position, but his shot wasn’t high enough and was caught by Samuel Reisgys retreating into his penalty box.
NJIT came back into the game with four shots of their own in 15 minutes from the 55th minute until the 70th minute when Alejandro Rabell scored the equalizing goal off a rebound from a Gavigan save coming from a Highlander free-kick.
The Eagles lost some of their attacking flair when O’Vonte Mullings had to be substituted off in the 80th minute with a leg cramp after his shot was saved by Reisgys.
Regsan Watkins was in the right moment at the right time gave the Highlanders the go-ahead goal in the 86th minute with a calmly slotted goal into the back of the net after the ball fell at his feet from an awkward fall on a punch by Connor Gavigan trying to clear the ball after Thomas Delplace deflected an NJIT cross.
Following the 2-1 loss FGCU had four players be named to the ASUN All-Tournament team; O’Vonte Mullings, Thomas Delplace, Shak Adams, and Ivan Rosales.