The GW men’s soccer team scored two goals to tie the game in the final seven minutes of regulation Wednesday afternoon, but the formidable late-game comeback could not save the Colonials from a loss against Maryland-Baltimore County. GW lost 3-2 in overtime after senior forward Arnar Johannsson scored the game-tying goal in the 90th minute.
The Colonials (1-2) were two goals down before they began to create scoring chances. With just under seven minutes to go, sophomore Frank Ambrosio fired in a shot to cut the lead to 2-1 before Johannsson scored with 26 seconds left on the clock.
UMBC got a break early in the extra frame when junior midfielder Danny Mongello’s cross was knocked into the net by a GW defender for the game winner.
Junior midfielder Matt Miller had a solid game for the Colonials, assisting both GW goals.
Several GW players said they were happy with Wednesday’s effort but that the overtime loss was tough to take.
“I think it’s the best we’ve played all year,” sophomore midfielder Steve Brown said. “I don’t know why it happens but it always takes one or two goals to get us to start playing.”
Senior midfielder Jeremy Catlin said this is a loss the Colonials can build on.
“We can get confidence because of the way we played in the second half today,” he said.
The game’s key sequence came in the 57th minute with GW already trailing 1-0. Johannsson had a good look at the net but fired a shot over the goal. UMBC quickly took advantage of the GW mishap about 10 seconds later with an offensive run of its own, as freshman Kevin Mezzadra fired a shot in from the top of the box to give the Retrievers a 2-0 lead.
GW and UMBC played a very physical style of defense, which caused a few small scuffles between the two teams. The squads had to be separated in the first half when a UMBC player fell down hard after a collision with a GW defender.
Throughout the game, the Colonials appeared upset at many non-calls by the referees. Head Coach George Lidster cited one example when a UMBC player nearly yanked off Johannsson’s shirt but was not whistled for a foul.
Players did not use referees as excuses.
“I didn’t think the referee was good but we have to learn not to let that affect the way we play,” Catlin said.
Brown said luck is not on GW’s side at the moment but that he is confident things will turn around soon.
The Colonials will have a chance to swing the momentum when they play at nearby George Mason Saturday night at 7 p.m.