Arnarsson's late tally give UNCG 2-1 win over William & Mary
GREENSBORO, N.C. - UNCG freshman Fannar Arnarsson scored his first goal in dramatic fashion, banking in a shot off the post in the 83rd minute to rally the Spartans past William & Mary on Wednesday, 2-1.
The Spartans improved to 3-2-0 on the season, while William & Mary fell to 3-1-0. The Tribe came into the match receiving votes in the NSCAA Top 25 poll and were No. 23 in the Top Drawer Soccer poll after outstanding wins over West Virginia and Rhode Island this past weekend.
With the game tied 1-1 and overtime looming, Arnarsson found himself with the ball inside the 18-yard box. The freshman from Raykjavik, Iceland, dribbled in and put a nifty juke on his defender to give himself space to shoot, then blasted a shot that went off the right post and in for the game-winner.
UNCG's goal was just its latest from one of its talented underclassmen. All seven of the Spartans' goals this season have been scored by freshmen and sophomores.
UNCG interim head coach Justin Maullin meets with the media following Wednesday night's win over William & Mary
"I thought the guys played really well tonight after that tough start," said interim coach Justin Maullin. "I thought Fannar was outstanding with his play in the middle. Overall the guys dug down and came through with a fantastic team effort."
William & Mary drew first blood in the contest, surprising the Spartans with a goal just 1:29 into the game. The Tribe was awarded a free kick about 10 yards into UNCG's defensive half, and Derek Buckley drilled a pass into the box. UNCG keeper Peyton Ford came off his line to make an attempt for it, but William & Mary's Alan Koger nodded it past him to put the Tribe on the board.
Despite the early miscue, the Spartans would dominate the opening half of play, and finally got the equalizer in the 30th minute. Hakan Ilhan picked up his second goal of the season, nodding home an Aaron Reifschneider cross from close range to knot the game 1-1.
UNCG held an 18-6 advantage in shots on the night and 12-1 in corner kicks. Andrew McAdams made nine saves for William & Mary to keep the Tribe within striking distance.
The Spartans return to action on Saturday night when they host Navy at 7 p.m. to continue their current four-match homestand.
Goals by period 1 2 Tot
William & Mary...... 1 0 - 1
UNCG................ 1 1 - 2
SCORING SUMMARY: W&M Koger, (Buckley), 1:29; UNCG Ilhan (Reifschneider), 29:46; UNCG Arnarsson (unassisted), 82:45. Shots: William & Mary 6, UNCG 18. Saves: William & Mary 9 (McAdams, Andrew 9), UNCG 0 (Ford 0). Corner Kicks: William & Mary 1, UNCG 12. Fouls: William & Mary 10, UNCG 15.
- UNCG -