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White's Goal Pushes Liberty to OT Win
Defender Greg White's first goal of the season, off a corner kick in overtime, propelled the Liberty Flames to a 1-0 victory over the VMI Keydets, Tuesday afternoon in a Big South men's soccer match at Patchin Field.
With the win, Liberty ups its Big South ledger to 4-3 and moves to 9-6-1 overall on the season. VMI falls to 2-5 in conference play and 2-11-2 overall. It is the second straight occasion that the Flames and the Keydets have gone to overtime in Lexington. In 2008, Liberty won 3-2 with a late goal in the second overtime by midfielder Juan F. Nino.
With the match scoreless, the Flames were able to set-up a scoring opportunity with a corner kick from the left flank. Midfielder Zack Clark's kick hit off VMI goalkeeper Brian Sowell and came free for White, who put the ball into the net for the game-winner at 98:00 for the win. The goal was the defender's first of the season.
Liberty opened the contest with a flurry of shots, firing five shots during the opening 13 minutes of play. The third shot of the sequence, a free kick by midfielder Juan F. Nino, in the ninth minute was the best scoring opportunity for the Flames, but Sowell was able to corral it for the save.
During the middle of the half, the two teams exchange shots. However, a shot by Liberty midfielder Phillip Aseweh in the 23rd minute and an attempt by VMI midfielder Brian Harding in the 21st minute were each blocked down in front by defenders.
The Flames finished the half with three consecutive shots. A shot by defender Sam Duininck, who had come into the game as a substitute in the 36th minute, went wide to start the burst. While attempts by Aseweh and fellow midfielder Thad Taylor went high after a Liberty corner kick in the closing minutes of the first half.
In the half, Liberty outshot VMI, 10-4, and held the edge on corner kicks, 3-2.
The Flames put early pressure on the Keydet net in the opening minutes of the second half. Both Aseweh in the 50th minute and midfielder Alex Verville in the 52nd minute, forced diving saves by Sowell to keep the contest scoreless.
The host Keydets came close to breaking the scoreless deadlock in the 57th minute. A shot by defender Brandon Gary from just above the 18-yard penalty box hit the post and bounced clear.
Nino countered for Liberty moments later with two consecutive shots, which forced two more saves by Sowell during the 58th minute.
The Flames were able to organize for a scoring attempt in the 80th minute off a corner kick. However, forward Timothy Bullock's shot went wide.
The Keydets also were able to set-up for a scoring opportunity in the final minutes of the half, but a shot by Jacob McIntyre in the 87th minute sailed wide and the match went to overtime.
In the second half, Liberty outshot the VMI, 11-6, while holding a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks.
The Flames went on the attack in the opening minutes of overtime. Verville worked free for a shot in the 92nd minute, which Sowell was able to save to keep the game scoreless.
In the 98th minute, Liberty garnered a corner kick which led to White's golden goal and the victory.
The Flames outshot the Keydets, 23-10, and held an 8-4 edge in corner kicks for the contest.
Liberty goalkeeper Paul Gilbert did not have a save in recording his fourth shutout of the year. Sowell had six saves in the contest for VMI.
The Flames return home for their final match of the 2010 regular season, Saturday. Liberty will host the UNC Asheville Bulldogs at Osborne Stadium. Game time is scheduled for 11 a.m.