AKRON, Ohio - Five second-half goals highlighted a spirited in-state showdown in which the seventh-rated Akron men's soccer team and Ohio State (1-4-1) fought to a 3-3 double-overtime draw on Wednesday, Sept. 16, before 3,889 fans at FirstEnergy Stadium – Cub Cadet Field.
The Zips (4-1-1) twice overcame second-half deficits to net the equalizer and eventually force the contest in overtime where Akron outshot the Buckeyes in extra time, 7-2, including 3-2 on net.
Senior Sean Sepe (West Islip, N.Y.) opened the scoring in the affair in the eighth minute (7:44) connecting on his first goal of the season chesting the ball past Ohio State goalkeeper Chris Froschauer to give the Zips a 1-0 advantage. Registering the first of three assists on the night after playing the ball in from the corner to a charging Sepe was redshirt sophomore Sam Gainford (Liverpool, England).
Redshirt sophomore Robby Dambrot (Akron, Ohio) narrowly missed extending Akron's lead to 2-0 as his shot at 29:15 mark was corralled by Froschauer for the save.
The Zips held a 1-0 lead at the intermission despite being outshot in the initial stanza, 7-6, including 3-2 on goal.
Danny Jensen netted the equalizer for the Buckeyes in the 49th minute (48:09) off an assist from Kyle Culbertson.
Sophomore Richie Laryea (Toronto, Ontario (Canada)) got off a strong shot on goal at the 52:13 that was again thwarted by a Froschauer save.
Culbertson gave Ohio State a 2-1 advantage in the 56th minute (55:15) delivering a ball from approximately 13 yards out. Garnering the assist with a solid ball from the corner was Yaw Amankwa.
Gainford narrowly missed squaring the game at two at the 63:04 mark as he got behind the Ohio State defense and struck the far post with his shot bounding back towards the center of the box before being cleared.
Inserted into the game in the 64th minute, redshirt sophomore Tyler Sanda (North Royalton, Ohio) made the most of his opportunity scoring his first career goal on a sliding shot in front of the box at the 68.46 mark. Sanda was the beneficiary of strong passes into the box from junior Adam Najem (Clifton, N.J.) and Gainford.
The momentum quickly swung back in favor of Ohio State as Abdi Mohamed extended the Buckeye's lead to 3-2 with his first goal of the season in the 70th minute (69:34). Collecting the assist on the tally was Hunter Robertson.
Scoring a dominating equalizer at the 76:43 mark with a header to score his fourth goal of the year was Najem. Gainford served a ball in from the corner that Najem propelled into the back of the net.
The Zips best scoring opportunity over the balance of regulation occurred in the 83rd minute (82:30) as Sepe's strike narrowly missed finding the top of the net.
Laryea, senior Andrew Souders (Amherst, Ohio) and Gainford notched shots on goal in overtime at the 96:34, 104:31 and 108:09 marks, respectively, that were stopped by saves from Froschauer.
Senior goalkeeper Jake Fenlason (San Diego, Calif.) made two of his five saves for Akron in overtime. Froschauer registered six saves for Ohio State.
The Zips bettered the Buckeyes on the evening in shots, 24-13, including a 9-8 margin in shots on goal. Akron outshot Ohio State in the second half and overtime, 17-6.
Sepe recorded a game-high five shots, while Najem, Gainford and Laryea added four, three and three shots, respectively, to the Zips' offensive efforts. Culbertson paced Ohio State with a team-high three shots.
Akron closes out its three-game homestand on Tuesday, Sept. 22, welcoming No. 7 Wake Forest to FirstEnergy Stadium – Cub cadet Field for a 7 p.m. tilt.