Neither team entered the match looking for the result that came at the conclusion of it, but one side was happier than the other to have it following the 3-3 draw between Gettysburg and New Oxford in YAIAA-2 boys’ soccer action Saturday afternoon at a sun-drenched Warrior Stadium in Gettysburg.
Gettysburg (5-4-1, 4-3-1) erased a two-goal deficit in the final nine minutes of regulation to level the match.
“We never play for a tie, but we’ll take it over a loss any day of the week,” Gettysburg co-head coach Ian Hancock said. “That’s what we love about our team: They never quit. There was a big crowd here today and they drew energy from it.”
The match moved into the 72nd minute with the Warriors still trailing, 3-1, when Jonah Brainard scored with 8:20 to go and that seemed to energize the spirited hosts even more.
Gettysburg continued to apply pressure and finally evened things when Malachi Abma blasted a shot home off an assist from Francisco Sandoval with 1:41 to play in regulation. Sandoval played the ball from center to left and Abma let it rip from 12 yards out.
Neither side could muster much in the first overtime, but the Warriors had a chance to win it in the second extra session when senior Joey Wagner got a clean look from 15 yards out from the center of the pitch and sent it towards the left side of the net. Ox keeper John Zavala laid out to keep the ball out of the goal and the teams played on with 3:23 remaining.
A little over a minute later, New Oxford appeared to have gotten the victory when Miguel Salazar whistled a shot past Gettysburg net minder Michael Biba, but Salazar was ruled to have committed a hand ball and the goal was waved off.
“It’ll go down as a tie, but I think we outplayed them for most of the match,” Ox head coach Andrew Dellinger said. “We didn’t hold on to a two-goal lead and you’ve got to be able to do that.”
The first goal of the match was sort of an odd one as Abma took a shot from 45 yards out and arced it high into the air before it bounced over the leap of Zavala and into the net at the 27:44 mark of the first half.
New Oxford (7-2-1, 5-1-1) responded by upping its intensity and began to hunt for the equalizer.
It took a little while, but the Colonials knotted things at 1-1 when Salazar finished an assist from Harvin Flowers with 11:24 to play until intermission.
But that did nothing to slow the visitors’ ambition to grab the lead.
Dylan Fissel teed up a shot at the 7:43 mark that was stonewalled by Biba, then Damian Lupian tried a header off of a corner with 1:44 to go until the break that was also denied.
A little over a minute later, the Ox had another corner and this one found a home behind Biba in the Gettysburg net when senior Connor Reeb redirected classmate Ray Orozco’s corner from the left side and the guest possessed a 2-1 advantage at the break.
Halftime did little to slow the momentum of the Ox and just over six minutes into the second half, the lead climbed to 3-1 as sophomore Jose Concepcion scored off of a throw-in from Daniel Wolfe at the 33:53 mark.
“Our guys did a nice job of responding after we went down a goal early in the match,” Dellinger said. “But that’s what I expect of them and that’s what they expect of themselves.”
New Oxford held an 8-7 advantage in shots on goal and a 13-2 edge in corners.
Both squads return to the pitch with home matches on Monday as the Warriors step out of division play and host Biglerville (11-0) for a 6 p.m. start, while the Colonials welcome YAIAA-2 playmate York Suburban (3-3-2) at 7 p.m.
Follow Tom Sixeas on Twitter at @TomSixeas
New Oxford 2 1 0 0 — 3
Gettysburg 1 2 0 0 — 3
Goals: NO-Miguel Salazar, Connor Reeb, Jose Concepcion; G-Malachi Abma 2, Jonah Brainard. Assists: NO-Harvin Flowers, Ray Orozco, Daniel Wolfe; G-Francisco Sandoval. Shots: NO-8; G-7. Corners: NO-13; G-2. Saves: NO-John Zavala 4; G-Michael Biba 5. JV: New Oxford 2, Gettysburg 0