Eckerd Ends Season with OT Loss to PBA

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – In the squad’s last game of the season, the Eckerd Tritons were hoping to end the 2009 season on a good note. Instead, the Tritons (2-13-1) were unable to do so as they fell to the Palm Beach Atlantic Sailfish in a 1-0 overtime heartbreaker.

With the loss of key players, the Eckerd College Tritons knew they were faced with a difficult task to try to beat Palm Beach Atlantic. Triton Midfielder, Amanda English was placed in the goalkeeper position due to the amount of injuries facing the team. However, they would not let the problems of injuries and sickness bring them down. Both teams held the other team scoreless after one half even though both teams had opportunities to score.

In the fourth minute, Sailfish Alivia McDaniel attempted to score from the right side, but was unsuccessful as English made her first save of the season. The Tritons made any attempt they could to score.

Freshman Spencer Janicki had two attempted shots on goal, but PBA goalkeeper Ashley Morrell made saves. Senior Megan Gunzelman had a few opportunities to score as she turned the ball over to Eckerd at midfield, and had a pass from Emily Johnson from the middle. However, PBA‘s defense was just as strong as they recovered and sent the ball down towards Eckerd’s defenders.

Just as the first half was neck and neck, the second half brought even more tension as the tie remained 0-0. Going into the second half, Coach Joe McCauley talked to his team about staying focused and playing the sport that they love.

“Mainly we talked a lot about how to play hard and play with heart, and have fun, and play relaxed and to enjoy tonight’s game and be loose, and I think they did that.”

PBA had a corner kick advantage in this half, as they were able to obtain five compared to Eckerd with two. Freshman defender Karen Wayes was brought in to replace English, where she also contributed one save. At the end of regulation, the score still remained 0-0, which led to the second overtime game of the season for the Tritons.

In overtime, it was PBA’s Angie Kuhn who snuck past Eckerd’s defense as she carried the ball through the middle for a goal in the 97th minute of play, ending the game with a score of 1-0.

Regarding the last few minutes of play, McCauley stated, “I think we played extremely well. That was a good shot at the end it was an upper corner type shot that would of have been difficult for any goalkeeper to handle. More than likely someone was going to get one of those and they got theirs first.”

PBA had a corner kick advantage of nine, with Eckerd only gaining two. PBA also outshot Eckerd 8-5.

The game brought Eckerd’s 2009 campaign to a close but, as always,
Coach McCauley remained positive.

“We had more creative plays from every player, we had more control of the ball, passes were better, everything was much better. I hope that this will again lead to something better next season.”