Said Abdi's first career game-winning goal came at the right time for the Winthrop men's soccer team as he scored with just over two minutes remaining in double-overtime for a 1-0 victory against Brevard on Wednesday.
Abdi took a pass from Otto Loewy, cut back to his left and ripped a low shot off the right post for the winner in the 108th minute. It seemed as if the game was won just two minutes earlier as Daniel Revivo headed home a short corner service from Stephen Nsereko, but the Eagles were flagged for offsides.
"Well, we didn't play poorly tonight, but we didn't play very smart," said Winthrop coach Rich Posipanko, who now has 199 career wins as Eagles coach. "We were never outplayed, but were out-worked most of the time.
"All the credit goes to Brevard. They have made tremendous improvement in one year. I have known Brevard head coach Juan Mascaro for many years, and he has the start of something very special there. They came into the game well prepared, well coached and wanted to win. If Brevard would play every game the way they played tonight their results would be much different. It was by far the best goalkeeping performance we have seen all season. Our focus now must turn to Radford on Saturday. Our level of play will certainly need to pick up if we expect to get a result."
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What a difference a year makes indeed. The Eagles (9-3), just like in last year's 9-1 victory over Brevard College, were all over the Tornados. However, Brevard goalkeeper Jerry Hatsady stole the show as he made 10 saves and corralled several services into the box to keep the Eagles off the scoreboard, until they finally broke through in double-overtime.
Winthrop finished with a 27-2 advantage in shots against Brevard (3-11-1). Patrick Mitrovich was able to handle both shots on goal for the Tornados as he earned his fourth shutout of the season.
Winthrop will now turn its focus back to the Big South as it travels to Radford, Va., on Saturday to take on Radford at 3 p.m.
• WOMEN'S GOLF -- In Greensboro, N.C., with four freshmen in the lineup, Winthrop women's golf team finished last in the 15-team UNCG-Starmount Fall Classic which concluded Tuesday at Starmount Forest Country Club.
The Lady Eagles fell out of contention early as they shot an opening-round 314 and followed that with 317 and 328 to finish with a 959 total, 65 shots behind tournament winner and host school UNC Greensboro. UNCG won the tournament on a fifth-player scorecard tiebreaker over defending tournament champion East Carolina. Illinois State's Stacey Miller won the individual title as she finished with a five-over 218.
Freshman Brittany Penny led Winthrop with a 54-hole total of 233 (77-78-80) as she tied for 35th place. Katie Keiser tied for 55th position at 241 (82-80-79). Freshman Kayla Cline tied for 60th place with a 243 (79-82-82), and freshman Katie Bolling tied for 68th place with a 246 (76-81-90). Senior Brittany Dabule finished with 249 (82-80-87) to tie for 71st place.
Winthrop will return to action Oct. 19-21 when it travels to Greenville, N.C., for the Lady Pirate Intercollegiate.