Stegman's Late Goal Forces Deadlock with #13 Falcons
– In their second straight game against a ranked opponent,
the North Georgia men's soccer team proved resilient, striking late
to force overtime and battling 13th-ranked Montevallo to a 2-2
deadlock Saturday evening at the Soccer Complex in Peach Belt
North Georgia remains undefeated on the season, moving to 3-0-3 overall and 1-0-1 in the Peach Belt Conference, while the Falcons see their five-game winning streak snapped to open the season but remaining undefeated, moving to 5-0-1 overall and 1-0-1 in the league.
Plenty of scoring came along in the first half as the Falcons jumped out on top in the 12th minute when Nathaniel Foster took a pass from James Steer and knocked home the game's first goal,
The Saints countered with the equalizer in the 29th minute as Caleb Turner sent a corner into the box, eventually finding Ben Chedgy who headed home his third goal of the year to make it 1-1.
Foster would add his second goal of the game and fifth of the year at the 30:48 mark however, winding up from 35 yards out and firing a laser strike that grazed off the left post and found the back of the net, giving Montevallo the lead once again at 2-1.
With time winding down on the Saints, Ben Tayi served the ball into the box, finding Ben Stegman who collected the pass fired a strike just inside the left post to send the crowd into eruption and knot the score once again, this time at 2-2. The goal at the 84:49 mark was Stegman's second of the year, eventually sending North Georgia to their fourth double overtime contest of the season and third tie of the year.
The Saints managed a single shot in the first overtime period, and three more in the second, but were unable to convert the game-winner. The Falcons were held without a shot in the opening overtime session, and tallied just in the second extra period, but it was wide of the mark.
The matchup of two of the most exciting goalkeepers in the southeast lived up to the hype as North Georgia's Rade Tanaskovic and Montevallo's Brendan Ledgeway both secured their team's goals for all 110 minutes of action. Ledgeway tallied the only two saves in the contest, while the Saints' defense allowed just two shots on goal, both coming from Foster and both resulting in goals.
North Georgia held a 16-7 advantage in shots, while the Falcons held a slim 7-5 edge in corner kicks. Fouls were whistled even on the night at 13 apiece as over 200 fans made their way to the Soccer Complex for another classic heavyweight showdown in the Peach Belt Conference.
The Saints return to action next Wednesday, playing host to Queens University of Charlotte in the final game of the longest home stand of the year. Kickoff against the Royals is set for 5:00 p.m. at the Soccer Complex.