Posted: September 6, 2009
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Lehigh men’s soccer team battled Brown to a 1-1 tie Sunday afternoon at Stevenson Field. After the Mountain Hawks took a 1-0 lead in the 64th minute, Brown was able to get a late goal in the 88th minute to send the game to extra minutes. Lehigh junior keeper Jonathan Nydell had a big day for the Mountain Hawks making nine saves, including one in the second overtime.
“Nydell was great,” head coach Dean Koski said. “He kept us in the game when our defense broke down and he was the reason we walked away with a tie.”
Each team had its chances to score throughout the first half, but neither could break the deadlock for the first 45 minutes.
The Mountain Hawks got on the board first in the 64th minute when freshman Austin Decker put home a pass from sophomores Ayo Olasupo and Kevin Strunk. Olasupo received a pass at the 18 from Strunk who delivered the ball from midfield and Decker ran onto the ball in the box to beat Brown’s keeper Paul Grandstand for his first career collegiate goal.
The Bears would not give up as they finally were able to put one in on their 22nd shot of the game. Junior Jon Okafor beat Nydell in the 88th minute off a pass from sophomore Sean Rosa.
Brown outshot Lehigh 27-8, but they were not able to beat Nydell and a tired Mountain Hawks team that was playing their third game in six days.
“We looked like a team that was tired after playing our third game in six days,” Koski said. “We relied heavily on our bench and they did a great job. To give up a goal in the last couple of minutes was deflating in many ways, but it was good to get a result on the road against a tough team.”
The Mountain Hawks will be heading back home with a 1-1-1 record and they will bring back several positives from their first road trip.
“It was a really good trip for us,” Koski said. “The freshmen were confronted with their first road trip and it was important for them to get that experience. After playing poorly on Friday guys came out and showed character and commitment and I was very pleased.”
Lehigh will return to action when the Mountain Hawks host the Towson Tigers Thursday September 10, at 7 p.m. Fans can catch live action of the game at lehighsports.com with commentary provided by Matt Abramowitz and Chip Kasprzak.