Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Colleges: Lions fall to late goal against No.17 Panthers

Florida Tech’s Teresa Brantley scored in the 18th minute of overtime to give the No.17 Panthers a 1-0 victory, and a season sweep, over Saint Leo at Rick Stottier Field on Tuesday evening.

Kelli Ragan’s pass found Brantley just inside the penalty area, and the forward made a quick move before chipping the ball into the net from 15 yards out. It was Brantley’s 10th goal of the season, and gave the Panthers their 12th victory of the season, setting a new school record.

“I was really frustrated with my play in the beginning of the game so it feels great to help the team earn a win,” Brantley said. “We battled throughout the match and were determined to win. It’s nice to get our 12th victory, but we still have three games ahead of us that we need to concentrate on.”

Both sides had fought to break the deadlock until that point, as Saint Leo’s Cristina Coca had made six saves and Florida Tech’s Melissa Pyles four to keep the game scoreless.

Florida Tech had defeated Saint Leo 4-2 on Oct. 3, and Coach Fidgi Haig was happy to have earned a pair of victories over the Lions in the regular season.

To win two games in one season against a strong team like Saint Leo is not something I imagined at the beginning of the season,” Haig said. “The way we battled and scored that final goal shows a lot of character that I’m sure we will use down the road. The defense and midfield played tremendously. It was good to see Teresa (Brantley) give us another strong effort and make things happen.

“Our 12th win does not mean anything right now. We have more important games ahead of us. We need to start focusing on our next match and reflect on what we have accomplished down the road.”

Saint Leo closes the regular season with a pair of SSC games on the road, travelling to face Nova Southeastern on Saturday afternoon.

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