Thomasville, GA - Junior forward Rowan Liburd scored the game winning Golden Goal five minutes into the first overtime period as Thomas (5-2) topped Spring Hill College (5-2) 3-2 on Sunday afternoon at the Wendy's Soccer Complex in game four of the First Annual TSC/SSAC Challenge.
Spring Hill opened the scoring twenty minutes into the game after withholding an initial TU attacking surge in the first 19 minutes. The teams exchanged possession of the ball and scoring opportunities in the final twenty five minutes but each goalkeeper recorded two saves a piece.
TU junior midfielder Danny Zevallos found a great time to score his first goal as a Night Hawk, equalizing the game at one with a blazing strike from the top of the 18 yard box only three minutes into the second half.
Two minutes later sloppy defensive play by the Night Hawks created an easy scoring opportunity for Spring Hill, once again giving them a one goal advantage. Down by one, Thomas created scoring opportunity after scoring opportunity but was unable to tie the game until senior midfielder Luciano Lorca split the SHC defense with a precise pass that found Liburd inside the 18 yard box, Liburd took a touch and beat the Spring Hill goalkeeper to the far post for the equalizing goal with 12 minutes to play.
Not satisfied with a tie, TU pushed forward for the game winner but was unable to find it in the final 12 minutes of regulation. The Night Hawks reeled off 21 shots in the final half of play but were turned away four times by the Spring Hill goalkeeper. From the start of OT the Night Hawks continued to impose their attack until they finally broke through when sophomore defender Luke Salmon found Liburd with a long through ball that was placed to the far post for the golden goal.
On Thursday September 20th TU, for the first time in program history, will play a conference match as they begin play in The Sun Conference. The Night Hawks will open TSC play with a match up against Ave Maria University at 6PM in Ave Maria, FL.