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Men’s Soccer: FAU defeats New Mexico with controversial overtime goal

The win marked the Owls second overtime victory of the season.

Junior forward Dylan Huber recorded a shot-on-goal in the Owls win over New Mexico. Mohammed F. Emran | Staff Photographer

Elyscia Saint-Hilaire, Contributing Writer

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With seven minutes remaining in the second overtime period, Florida Atlantic junior forward Oliver Powers scored a golden goal to give the Owls a 2-1 win over New Mexico on Saturday night in Boca Raton.

The controversy lies in whether or not the ball bounced off of freshman midfielder Nikolas Gomez, who appeared to be in an offsides position when Powers scored his game winning goal.

According to head coach Kos Donev, the goal was good.

“They were complaining that our number 20 touched the ball, therefore if that was the case then he would of been offside,” said Donev. “At this time in the game when you get a goal against you like this, you’re going to do any type of complaining to change the mind of the referees.”

The game was evenly matched in the first half, with two shots on goal by both teams. It ended with a 0-0 tie.

FAU started the match with a shot on the Lobos only 30 seconds into the game. Both teams shared possession until the Lobos had their first shot on target, via a one-on-one breakaway with 18 minutes left in the first half, which was saved by senior goalkeeper Phillip Hitpass.

The second half yielded more action, with 18 shots-on-goal by the Lobos and six by FAU. Even with the the number of shots being in the Lobos favor, FAU scored the first goal of the match in the 73rd minute on a diving header by junior midfielder Danny Del Rio off of an indirect kick.

New Mexico’s equalizer came with only three minutes remaining in the match when Luke Lawrence scored off of a defensive mistake which allowed him ample time to set the ball up and shoot.

Hitpass’ saves kept FAU in the game as both goals followed a one-on-one save. Hitpass said he was just trying to do his job and keep his boys in the game and try to get the “W.”

“Those situations are really essential for staying in the game and giving the boys a second breath,” Hitpass said.

After the game, Donev praised Hitpass’ important saves which kept his team in the game.

“Philip gave us nine lives, he gave us life, and those saves made in the game kept us fresh, and gave us hope, and then we get motivated more to play harder when we see something like that,” Donev said.

With this victory the Owls are now 4-6-1, 2-2 in Conference USA, and will look to continue with a win against Florida International on Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. in Miami.

Elyscia Saint-Hilaire is a contributing writer with the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email esainthilair2015@fau.edu or tweet her at @elyscia_saint18.

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