WEST HARTFORD, CT – Iona and Hartford battled to a 1-1 draw in West Hartford, CT on Saturday night. Every game that the Maroon & Gold have played in this season have been decided by one-goal or ended in ties.
Hartford set the tone early on with three corner kick chances in the opening nine minutes. The Maroon & Gold backline stood tall and eventually the momentum began to swing. Senior Luis Mendozamade the Hartford crowd nervous with a rising screamer from 25 yards out that sailed a foot over the crossbar.
Iona's goal came courtesy of a Hartford own goal. Humbert Ferrer planted himself on the right side of the penalty box and headed it towards net. The junior defender knocked a header towards center when a Hartford defender came flying in and knocked the ball in the back of his own net.
The Gaels had a chance at a second goal in the 36th minute. After being awarded a free kick 20 yards from net, sophomore Malcolm Moreno found himself with opportunity off of Mendoza's free kick. Moreno lined up and had a longer chip attempt sail just off net.
Hartford outshot Iona 3-2 in the first half. Most notably, the Hawks finished the first 45 minutes with six corner chances compared to one for the Gaels.
The Hawks pressed heavily to open the second half. Junior Xahne Reid set up a chance charging the left side and flicking a pass to the center of the box where senior Andre Morrison knocked a one-time high-chopping shot just left of the side post.
Junior Killian Colombie came on as a sub midway through the second half and immediately tested Hartford sophomore goalkeeper Jimmy Slayton. Freshman Lenworth Lopez served a ball in from the left site, finding the foot of Colombie past a diving Hawk defender; Iona's Paris, France native was denied his first score of the season when Slayton lunged to get a punch-save.
Ferrer, who set up Hartford's own-goal miscue in the first, nearly scored in the 71st minute off a set piece.
Hartford tied the game in the 87th minute with a score from Antoine. His first goal of the season was assisted by Rasmus Karlsson.
Senior Mike Barry and Akujobi put shots towards goal in the first 2:12 of overtime. Despite missing on the chances, the Hawks did have two more corner chances that Iona was forced to turn away.
Iona had a chance to win the game in the 98th minute. Junior Anthony Gomez checked in and with his first touch he made Slayton make a diving save to his right in order to preserve the tie.
Overall Hartford outshout Iona 15 to 10. The Hawks had a distinct 11 to 6 corner kick opportunity advantage.
Iona returns to action on Wednesday, Sept. 20 against Sacred Heart.