ALBANY, N.Y. – John Egan (Smithtown, N.Y./Hauppauge) scored the equalizer in the 89th minute and Jelani Williams (West Orange, N.J./West Orange) tallied the game-winning goal in the 106th minute as the Monmouth University men’s soccer team came from behind to defeat Albany, 2-1, Sunday afternoon on Bob Ford Field. With the win, the Hawks improve to 2-1-0, while the Great Danes fall to 1-1-1.
“I’m really proud of these guys,” said Monmouth Head Coach Robert McCourt. “Albany has a very good team and played very well. We’ve been dealing with some adversity with injuries and fitness due to injuries and the guys really responded well. I thought we deserved the game today so I was really proud of their performance. It was a complete team effort.”
The Hawks fell behind, 1-0, in the 22nd minute when Philip Persson served the ball into the box off a free kick and Bernardo Mattos headed it in from close range.
Monmouth searched for the equalizer on a pair of set pieces in the 68th minute, but was turned away. The Hawks finally broke through in the 89th minute as a corner was initially turned aside. But Derek Luke (Bridgewater, N.J./Bridgewater-Raritan) played the ball back into the box to Egan, who redirected it inside the left post to beat Albany goalkeeper Tim Allen. The goal was the first of Egan’s collegiate career.
Following the first 10 minutes of overtime in which neither team got a shot off, Bryant Avalos (Brick, N.J./Monsignor Donovan) beat his defender to the goal line before sending a cross into the box. Williams got on the end of it and beat Allen on one touch for the golden goal, his first as a Hawk.
For the game, the Hawks took an 11-9 edge in shots, including a 9-4 edge after halftime. Monmouth also enjoyed a 7-2 edge in corner kicks.
Monmouth returns to action Saturday, when it plays host to Holy Cross. Kickoff from Hesse Field on The Great Lawn is slated for 7 p.m.