CHARLOTTE, NC—After an intense matchup against two top-ranked teams, the fifth-ranked Charlotte 49ers behind a Thomas Allen goal defeated the 14th-ranked Coastal Carolina Chanticleers 1-0 in double overtime at Transamerica Field.
“Incredible that this was our second double overtime game in a 48 hour period,” Charlotte coach Kevin Langan said. “I was proud of our effort and desire to win tonight.”
Allen found his way to the goal in the 102nd minute after a slight tap in the far post off a corner kick from Tyler Gibson.
“We came close to scoring the entire game,” Allen said. “In double overtime, Gibbo (Tyler Gibson) put a great ball in and I was at the back post at the right time.
The 49ers were put to the test against the Chanticleers who forced Charlotte into its second consecutive overtime game.
Emotions, frustrations, and a whole bunch a whistles highlighted the game which featured two yellow cards for both teams and a red card ejection for Coastal’s Jhamie Hyde in the 24th minute.
Offensively Charlotte controlled the game, taking a 16-8 advantage on shots. The 49ers also enjoyed a 7-3 advantage in corner kicks. Aidan Kirkbride and Anthony Perez led the 49ers with three shots apiece. While, Owen Darby, Giuseppe Gentile and Donnie Smith each tallied two shots apiece.
The 49ers defense was stellar as they shutout a Coastal Carolina team that scored 66 goals last season. The 49ers limited Coastal Carolina All-American forward Ashton Bennett, who scored 23 goals last season, to only one shot.
“Our game plan was whenever their forwards got the ball we would have numbers around them,” Langan said. “It was a total team defensive effort.”
The 49ers had some great scoring chances in the game. Late in the second half, Gentile had a breakaway but his shot went just wide of the goal. Smith and Kirkbride also had great scoring chances but Coastal Carolina’s goalkeeper Federico Bertele made several great saves preventing the 49ers from scoring. Another time it appeared that Gentile had scored the game winning goal in the closing minutes of regulation but his goal was disallowed after he was called for a foul just outside the box.
Charlotte returns to action when they conclude their three-game season opening home stand when they host UAB at Transamerica Field, Friday, August 31 at 7 pm.