BOWLING GREEN, Ohio – In a hard-fought contest played in wet and muddy conditions due to lingering rain and lightning, the University of Akron men's soccer team battled Bowling Green (2-5-3, 0-0-1 MAC) to a 0-0 draw in double overtime in the Mid-American Conference opener for both schools on Saturday, Oct. 6.
The Zips (4-4-2, 0-0-1 MAC) outshot the Falcons on the evening, 21-7, including 10-2 on frame, and posted a 16-1 edge in corner kicks, but Akron was unable to find the golden goal in overtime to earn the triumph.
Sophomore David Egbo (Enugu, Nigeria) directed the Zips' offensive efforts recording a game-best five shots. Contributing four, three and three shots, respectively, for Akron was freshman Sam Tojaga (Erie, Pa.), redshirt sophomore Diogo Pacheco (Lisbon, Portugal) and senior Ezana Kahsay (Asmeras, Eritrea). Chris Brennan led Bowling Green with a team-high three shots.
The contest was played in rain early before action was halted due to lightning with 7:30 remaining in the opening stanza. The contest resumed nearly 40 minutes later as neither side found a goal in the opening 45 minutes of play.
Junior Marcel Zajac (Mississauga, Ontario) placed the first shot on goal of the evening on frame at the 17:11 mark, only to see his strike thwarted by a save from Falcons' goalkeeper Anthony Mwembia.
Akron senior goalkeeper Ben Lundt (Berlin, Germany) denied the scoring chance with a save off a header by Moe Mustafa in the 30th minute (29:15).
Immediately before the lightning delay, senior Abdi Mohamed (Westerville, Ohio) connected on a shot on goal at the 35:44 mark for the Zips, again denied by a Mwembia save.
Following the delay, Kahsay unleashed a shot in the 43rd minute (42:57) that was collected for a save by Mwembia.
The Zips outshot Bowling Green in the opening half, 6-3, including 3-1 on goal.
Lundt again made the save for Akron off a shot by Brennan in the 58th minute (57:15).
Shot by Pacheco and redshirt junior Skye Harter (Copley, Ohio) were denied by saves from Mwembia at the 70:29 and 73:36 marks, respectively.
With the clock winding down in the second half, Pacheco and freshman Marco Milanese (Isernia, Italy) posted shots on goal, which again were stopped by saves from Mwembia in the 83rd (82:08 and 82:42) minute.
The Zips bettered the Falcons in second-half shots, 8-4, including 4-1 on net.
Neither side was able to record a shot in the opening overtime period. In the second-overtime stanza, Akron registered seven shots, including three on goal, and garnered six corner kicks, but were unable to find the back of the net with the game-winner. Egbo, Tojaga and Harter each had shots on goal thwarted by saves from Mwembia over the final 10 minutes of the match.
Lundt finished the evening making two saves en route to collecting his fourth shutout of the season and 24th of his Akron career, while Mwembia made 10 stops to also earn the clean sheet.
Akron returns to action on Tuesday, Oct. 9, as the Zips travel to East Lansing, Mich., for 7 p.m. match at Michigan State. The contest will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.