HAMDEN, Conn. - A first-half goal by junior Tolle Staffanson (Goteborg, Sweden) helped the Quinnipiac University men's soccer team to 1-1 tie with St. Francis (NY) Sunday afternoon. The tie gives the Bobcats 17 points in the Northeast Conference standings as they now post a record of 5-0-2, while 8-1-6 overall. The Terriers' point keeps them one back of the Bobcats with a 5-1-1 NEC mark and are 8-5-1 overall this season.
"A tie is a good thing for both teams today," said head coach Eric Da Costa. "I think both teams are walking away happy with the result. We are a team that feels comfortable playing with the lead, but it just shows you that anything can happen. We came out looking for the three points, but at the end of the day, I think we both are happy with the result."
Staffanson became the seventh different Bobcat to score his first-career goal this season when he found the top left corner of the net in the 18th minute of play. Freshman Philip Suprise (Milwaukee, Wis.) corralled a loose ball in the goal box and flicked a pass to his right. Staffanson moved into the box undetected by the Terriers' defense and headed the ball in the net for the 1-0 advantage.
Both teams put a great deal of emphasis on offensive play in the second half. St. Francis' Robbie Weir nearly tied the game, 1-1, with 21 minutes remaining, but was stop by a diving Freddy Hall (St. George, Bermuda) in goal for the Bobcats.
Hall finished the game with seven saves, but was unable to stop Nick Baum's shot in the 86th minute. A scramble in the box allowed Baum to put a shot into the lower left corner as Hall was not able to get his footing in the slippery field conditions. The Quinnipiac senior goalkeeper slipped moving to his right to try and make a diving save on the shot, but could not reach as the ball rolled into the net for the tying goal.
Quinnipiac looked to take control of the game in the overtime sessions, attempting eight shots to St. Francis' three in the extra 20 minutes of play. Staffanson nearly netted his second of the game on a header with 2:45 remaining in the first overtime period, but Terrier goalkeeper Chris Antonio made a leaping save to his left to keep the score deadlocked at 1-1.
Junior forward Nick Pelicaen (Schoten, Belgium) and senior midfielder Shane Recklet (Shelton, Conn.) each had opportunities to give the Bobcats the win with under a minute left in overtime, but were denied by Antonio. Pelicaen's sprawling header was stopped point blank followed by another save off the left foot of Recklet from the top of the goal box through traffic.
Hall allowed his first goal in 402 minutes of action on the lone St. Francis tally. Antonio turned aside 10 shots in the game, surrendering just the one first-half goal in the game.
Quinnipiac next plays Friday, Oct. 30 in Emmitsburg, Md., against Mount St. Mary's. The Bobcats and Mountaineers are scheduled to kickoff at 7 p.m.