MELBOURNE, Fla. (Men’s Soccer) – In a rescheduled match due to weather, the Panthers
took on the Rollins Tars in Melbourne on Monday. The Tars weren’t sure if it was the same Florida Tech team they saw at the beginning of the season or not.
In the first game of the season, the Panthers went down to Rollins in Winter Park, Fla. by a score of 3-0. Florida Tech was riddled with injuries and
players yet to be cleared. Monday, nearing full strength, the Panthers pushed Rollins to a double overtime 1-1 tie and had a few close calls that would
have made it a win. The Panthers’ record goes to 2-6-2 and 1-2-1 in the Sunshine State Conference.
To start the match, the Panthers applied pressure early. There were two chances in front of the Tars’ net early, but the Panthers couldn’t convert.
However, early in the 12th minute, Rollins was able to score the first goal of the match. Leslie Osei of Rollins placed a corner kick in front of the
Panther goal that Thomas Biddinger was able to head into the top of the net.
The Panthers showed their resiliency as they bounced back pretty quickly. Less than 10 minutes later, Florida Tech scored the tying goal. Freshman
Williams brought the ball up the left side of the field and found sophomore forward Edward Oyarce in the box. Oyarce
corralled the pass, turned and rifled the ball into the lower left side of the net.
Florida Tech’s defense was solid in the first half. The Panthers only allowed one shot on goal and just five for the match. However, Rollins did take 20
shots on the afternoon. Florida Tech had a much higher shot on goal percentage as they were able to tally five shots on goal from eight shots total.
Two reserves for the Panthers were able to make quite a showing in the match. Oyarce and graduate student Bello Illiassou teamed with starting sophomore forward
Nicolas Garcia to apply
pressure in the front all day. Toward the end of the match Oyarce was able to cross the ball from the left side for a header from Garcia. Garcia just
missed the ball as it was inches above his head. Illiassou had a few close calls himself. His header off a corner kick from freshman midfielder
Tyson Eyo went just
above the goal. He also had a few breakaways that were foiled by the Tar defenders.
The Panthers will head to Saint Leo, Fla. on Friday for their next action against the Lions.