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Firebirds Edged, 2-1 in Overtime at No. 25 Gannon

Senior defender Victor Salinas Furio anchored a defense unit that allowed just one goal in regulation.
Senior defender Victor Salinas Furio anchored a defense unit that allowed just one goal in regulation.

ERIE, PA – Alex Schroeck's goal from 20 yards out on the left side of the field late in the first overtime period lifted the host and No. 25 nationally-ranked Gannon University Golden Knights to a 2-1 victory over University of the District of Columbia Wednesday afternoon at McConnell Family Stadium.

"We played extremely well, and we didn't deserve to lose that game in overtime," head coach Matt Thompson said. "I'm disappointed, but really pleased with the application of the players. Against a nationally-ranked team, we matched them - even out-played them at times - creating many chances to score."

Freshman midfielder Gabriel Torres scored the Firebirds' lone goal less than a minute into the second half, hammering home a deflection off a Gannon defender for his 2nd goal of the season. He led UDC today with three shots.

Gannon (4-2-1) responded a little less than seven minutes later as Hamza Mourchid weaved past a UDC defender, and fired a shot from just five yards out for his 10th goal of the season to knot the score at one.

Neither team could break the tie in the final 38 minutes of regulation, so the game went to overtime – UDC's 2nd extra-session game this season and Gannon's 4th this season and its second consecutive overtime game. The Firebirds managed to hold the Golden Knights – a team that averages 2.67 goals per-game this season – to just one goal in regulation.

UDC had a quality chance to score in the overtime when sophomore forward Kevin Claure-Guzman had a breakaway opportunity, but Gannon goalkeeper Jorge Hernandez made a great save to keep the Knights alive. 

Later, UDC was whistled for a foul and a yellow card at the 98:28 mark, and just 11 seconds later, a pass by Mourchid found the feet of Schroeck, who beat UDC senior goalkeeper Ever Guevera Alvarez for the gamewinner.

The Firebirds (1-6) will return to the pitch on Saturday, September 24th in Dobbs Ferry, NY to take on East Coast Conference foe Mercy College. UDC is 1-0 in conference play this season after defeating Bridgeport, 1-0 last Saturday. Kickoff at Mercy is scheduled for 3 p.m.

"This was a great performance, there was great work ethic...many things to be positive about," Thompson said. "Looking forward to conference play on Saturday."