BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo men's soccer team
closed out their 2009 home regular season schedule in double
overtime by tying Big Four rival Canisius, 1-1 on Monday evening at
UB Stadium. On Senior Day, the senior connection of Mateo Escobar
and Dan Bulley brought the Bulls back from a one-goal deficit in
the first half to tie the contest at 1-1 in the 56th minute.
As each team battled to gain possession, the Golden Griffins seized an opportunity to break the scoreless contest in the 15th minute. Leading goal-scorer Alan McGreal sent a low ball between two Bulls' defenders over to midfielder J.J. Hughes, positioned on the left wing. Dribbling the ball in from 15 yards out, Hughes faced off one-on-one versus Buffalo goalkeeper Nick Fetterman from eight yards out. The midfielder tucked the ball low inside the left post and out of Fetterman's reach for the Golden Griffins' 1-0 lead.
Facing a one-goal deficit, the Bulls came out on the attack to start the second half. With the ball volleying back and forth between the two ends, the Bulls captitalized on a Golden Griffins' failed header to clear the ball. On the Golden Griffins' failed attempt, the ball dropped onto the cleat of midfielder Escobar. Looking to dish the ball off, Escobar found forward Bulley working into position along the right side. Escobar completed the senior connection by dishing the ball off to Bulley. Handling the pass, Bulley fired a shot from 12 yards out to bury his third goal of the season and 17th of his career, tying the contest at 1-1 in the 56th minute.
"I am very happy for Dan to score on of all days, Senior Day. He is an exciting type of player, who you never know what he is going to do with the ball," said head coach John Astudillo.
Bulley's tally moved him into a three-way tie for tenth place in most career goals (17) with Brian Hanchar (1989-91) and Kurt Felgemacher (1981, 83, 85).
The Bulls and Golden Griffins continued in a physical battle in the time remaining to force an overtime period followed by a second overtime with neither team able to capitalize on opportunities.
The Bulls held an 18-11 shot advantage with seniors Alex Marello and Bulley accounting for four shots each.
"In the first half, we should have played better. We were rushing the play instead of possessing the ball and giving it time to develop," said Astudillo. "In our offensive end, we are finding scoring chances but we were unable to capitalize on them, which is frustrating. We are a frustrated team right now because we are playing well but we are not getting the results we want," added Astudillo.
Prior to the contest, the Bulls honored six seniors as a part of their annual Senior Day celebration. Among those honored were Bulley, Escobar, Marrello, Alex Mihal, Mike Sobolewski and Steffen Thoresen. Also honored was senior student-manager Jon Schmieder.
Buffalo (5-9-1, 0-4 MAC) will travel to Boca Raton, FL to face Florida Atlantic on Friday, October 30 at 4:00 pm in one of the Bulls' final two road conference contests.