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MSOC: UD Rallies For 2-2 2OT Draw With SLU
MSOC: UD Rallies For 2-2 2OT Draw With SLU
C.M. Rieman
Published by Chris R
Smile MSOC: UD Rallies For 2-2 2OT Draw With SLU

DAYTON (OH) -- The Dayton Flyers fell behind 2-0 in the 2nd half but rallied for two unanswered goals against visiting Saint Louis to tie the match and force extra time. Neither side could find a game-winner and after two OTs the match ended up a 2-2 draw. UD's record now stands at 4-2-4 (0-0-1) while SLU leaves town at 3-1-4 (0-0-1).

The opening minutes of the 1st half were a sign of things to come as both sides had trouble maintaining consistent possession for extended periods. Active and alert defensively, the mids and back-line players were quick to step up and pick off passes or dig out loose balls and switch the direction of play. Oftentimes both teams were forced to play balls backwards in order to maintain possession as defensive pressure clogged up passing lanes moving forward.

The inability of either side to build an attack continued over the last 30 minutes of the half. At times, the ball swung from one goalkeeper to another with long boots that bounced or caromed without the field players taking part in much of the action. Additional long balls from the Flyers and Bills were placed out of the back line with the hope of finding attacking teammates running into open space, but there was little space to exploit.

Rok Taneski had a free kick opportunity from about 25yds late in the first half but almost sailed it over the UD Music Building. Likewise, Sloo earned a free kick from about 20yds but the low shot skipped just wide of the far post to keep the match scoreless.

As the first half ended, not much had been settled other than the reality that things were developing into a defensive struggle where one goal might be enough to win the match. Sloo held the slight advantage in shots (4-3) and shots on goal (2-1). The Bills also took the lone corner kick.

The 2nd half started much like the first 45 minutes. Neither team found room to maneuver as defense continued to dominate the match. The run of play went back and forth with more dispossession, long balls, and easy work by the goalkeepers.

SLU finally caught a break in the 59th minute when a shot from the left side of the box hit the near post and bounced back into play. The Bills collected the rebound and one-timed it back into an open net from 6yds out to take the 1-0 lead. Sloo began generated a handful of free kicks just outside the Dayton goal box and cashed in on a free kick from 23yds along the right side in the 63rd minute to take the commanding 2-0 lead. The low, driving ball to the far post squibbed untouched through the mixer and caught GK Federico Barrios off guard as it slipped past the melee and into the net.

In a span of five minutes the Flyers suddenly found themselves down a pair of goals and it wasn't looking good. But they quickly recovered and put themselves back in the match just a minute later on a well-taken header inside the box to cut the deficit to 2-1. Jacob Degler leaned in for the redirect off a cross from Daniel Dos Santos along the left side, tucking it far post for his first goal of the season.

The Flyers found some life after Degler's goal and picked up the tempo a bit to give themselves a fighting chance to find the equalizer. Dayton hit the post in the 77th minute but Laurel Aug was lurking in the box to clean up the loose change from 6yds out to tie the match at 2-2 with just over 10 minutes remaining.

Neither team could punch in a game-winner over the final minutes of regulation, forcing the match into extra time. Clearly however, the Flyers had the momentum after climbing back from a 2-0 deficit in the 2nd half -- a half that started as another defensive struggle but somehow managed to surrender four goals in the process.

Sloo dominated the first overtime with consistent pressure up top that generated a number of free kicks and corner kicks after placing balls on target that forced Barrios to take no chances with.

The final 10 minutes of extra time consisted of back-and-forth play with both teams creating several half-chances after sending numerous balls in the box. Dayton generated one last effort in the final minute on a cross that Bills GK Seth Stiebel was able to nab and effectively end the match in a 2-2 tie.

Overall shots favored Sloo 18-10 including 7-3 on frame. The Billikens also dominated corner kicks 8-2. Barrios finished with five saves while Sloo needed just one all night. The good news is UD finished two of their three shots on goal over 110 minutes of play. Unfortunately, the lack of quality chances overall is an issue that needs a course correction as A10 play continues.

The Flyer effort was solid from start to finish as hustle and 50/50 challenges were commendable. Both teams received some fortunate bounces off the post, while neither side totally dominated (though Sloo did enjoy modestly better run-of-play). Dayton was certainly looking for a home victory to jumpstart the conference schedule, but salvaging a point after falling behind 2-0 to a quality side like Saint Louis is not a terrible outcome under the circumstances.

UD travels to St. Bonaventure on Wednesday for a 7pm match in Olean, NY.

C. M. Rieman | Publisher | 937.361.4630 | Get the latest here:

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