MARS HILL, N.C. – Jordan Lennon's header in double overtime proved to be the difference maker as the Lions (1-0-0) downed Shorter (0-1-0), 2-1, Wednesday evening at the Ammons Family Athletic Center and Meares Stadium.
With 6:19 left on the clock, a free kick sent in from Joakim Lien was redirected by the jumping junior forward and soared underneath the crossbar to give the Lions the 2-1 win.
"I couldn't be more proud of the entire team for their efforts this evening," head coach Gregg Munn said. "I thought that overall, we played some really good soccer and deserved the victory, but for me what stood out was the heart shown by all the guys to really dig deep and to grind out a victory against a solid opponent. Good start and hopefully more to come."
In the first overtime frame, with 4:38 left, Shorter drew a penalty kick. The shot was taken by Hernan Saldana, but the fully extended dive from freshman goalkeeper Brian Salzman kept the ball from finding its way into the top left corner of the net. Salzman would make another game-saving stop with under two minutes remaining in the first overtime stanza, jumping up and punching the ball over the crossbar.
The Lions weathered early offensive chances from the Hawks until the 26th minute of the first half. Receiving a pass from the left wing, Sebastian Bertilsson tapped the ball over to the oncoming Sam Roe, who in motion, booted the ball past Sean Carpenter inside the right post to put the Lions up 1-0 with less than 20 minutes remaining in the half.
In the 63 minute, Shorter tied the game at one with a goal scored from the foot of Thalison Alex. Following a rebound off of the near post, Alex tucked it behind Salzman.
With the thrilling conclusion, Munn earns his first win as the Mars Hill men's soccer head coach.
Mars Hill returns to action on Sunday, September 2 at the Ammons Family Athletic Center and Meares Stadium with a 2 p.m. tilt against Emmanuel.