The men's soccer team topped Austin College on Salamone Field on Friday evening, 3-1. The Petrels netted three first half goals but played a man down for the final 25 minutes of the contest during which senior goalie Jon Beaver denied the Kangaroos on two separate penalty kick opportunities.
Oglethorpe got the scoring started in the game's 14th minute when Jakub Madej played a through ball that Aleksander Tanjga blasted home from the right wing from 25 feet to give the Petrels the 1-0 advantage. Ben Robertson followed with a nifty strike of his own in the 30th minute when he raced down the right wing and juked two 'Roo defenders before darting to the middle and cracking a winner past Austin keeper Grant Gosselin. Oglethorpe ended the half with a flourish when Mark Lavery netted a goal on a singularly individual move, scoring from the left wing with less than two minutes remaining to make the score 3-0.
The 'Roos came out fighting in the second half, however, and trimmed the lead to two on a strike in the 53rd minute. The match then took a dramatic turn at the 64:55 mark when 'Roo forward Chris Melton broke past the Petrel defense into the box and was subsequently taken down by Petrel keeper Frank Petersen for the disqualifying red card. Oglethorpe removed a midfielder from their lineup and began playing with 10 men, and senior Jon Beaver stepped onto the field to face to face the daunting task of a penalty kick. Beaver proved up to the challenge, stifling Melton's shot at the right post.
Beaver's substitution goalie heroics were not done yet. Only 5 minutes later, the Petrels were whistled for another foul inside the box. This time the 'Roos Chris Stein took the kick, and, once again, Beaver denied the blast to the right. Stein was able to get his foot on the rebound but the shot missed and the Petrels escaped unscathed yet again.
From there, Oglethorpe hustled the field and held their ground en route to the home victory. The Petrels are off to a terrific start at 7-2 on the season and 1-0 in SCAC play. They'll have a chance to improve their record on Sunday when the face the University of Dallas at 2:00 p.m. on Salamone Field