BRIDGEWATER, Va. - Bridgewater College battled back from a 1-0 halftime deficit to play Randolph-Macon to a 1-1 draw Tuesday afternoon in the regular season finale for both teams.
The tie secures a spot for the Eagles in the upcoming ODAC men's soccer tournament. The one point gained from Tuesday's tie clinches a spot in the top eight. Seedings, pairings and game times for the tournament's first-round games will be announced following the conclusion of Tuesday's games.
Randolph-Macon entered Tuesday's contest as one of the top teams in the ODAC with a 6-2 conference record. In the first half, the Yellow Jackets controlled play, holding a 15-1 edge in shots over the Eagles.
Randolph-Macon scored in the 24th minute of play when Peter Nelson buried a shot from the top of the box for a 1-0 Yellow Jackets' lead.
Following intermission, the Eagles began to limit Macon's scoring opportunities while creating offense against the stingy Yellow Jackets defense.
Bridgewater tied the contest in the 56th minute. Thomas White worked inside the box and took a shot from in front of the goal that was blocked. Eric Hogge cleaned up the deflection and his shot tied the score at 1-1.
There were several scoring chances down the stretch in regulation, but the keepers came up big each time.
In the 66th minute. Bridgewater's Julian Ofori worked free for an open shot from just inside the box, but his attempt was blocked by a Macon defender. In the 71st minute, Alex Piro spun free for an open shot from 20 yards out, but he missed wide right. The Eagles kept the pressure on and in the 73rd minute Sam Beckman split two defenders on the far side for a shot from 15 yards out, but Macon keeper Brian Breslin was in position for the save. In the 76th minute a loose ball in the box led to a shot for BC's Roberto Gonzalez, but his attempt was smothered by Breslin.
The Yellow Jackets had their chances in the 79th minute with an offensive flurry producing two shots, a corner and a subsequent header. Consecutive shots from Christian Torres and Andrew Griggs were blocked by Bridgewater defenders with the second block resulting in a corner kick. Griggs sent the corner kick into the box where a header by Bryan Lutz sailed high over the crossbar.
In the final three minutes, Eagles' keeper Quentin Boric made a pair of saves to keep the Jackets off the board while at the other end, an open look for Ofori from in close sailed high and wide of the mark.
In the first overtime, the visitiors put early pressure on the Bridgewater defense, forcing Boric to make a pair of saves.
In the second OT, the Eagles had their best chance when Marc Almeida controlled a loose ball in the box, but his shot on goal was stopped by Breslin.
Randolph-Macon's huge shot advantage in the first half led to a 29-11 advantage in shots overall. The visitors also held a 9-4 edge in corner kicks. Boric finished the contest with 12 saves for the Eagles while Breslin recorded five saves for R-MC.
Brigewater finishes the season at 7-9-1 overall and a 4-4-1 mark in the ODAC while the Yellow Jackets close out the regular season at 13-2-1 overall and 6-2-1 in conference play.