EUREKA — Blackburn narrowly denied the Eureka men's soccer team its first St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference victory of the year on a cold, rainy afternoon at McKinzie Field on Saturday.
The Red Devils held a 2-0 lead in the second half, but Blackburn tied it up just before the end of regulation and delivered the golden goal with just over a minute and a half left in the second period of extra time.
Michael Hansen (Peoria, Ill./Limestone) put the Red Devils on the board in the fifteenth minute with an unassisted goal that put EC in control.
It stayed that way until the 70th minute when Prince Balaba of Blackburn made it 2-1.
For the next 20 minutes, both teams scrapped for the strike that would change the match.
A Eureka finish would have given the Red Devils insurance, while a Blackburn equalizer would dramatically tip the scales.
Finally, with 45 seconds remaining, Blackburn goalkeeper Chance Fielder pushed up and played a ball in from 45 yards out. EC goalkeeper Fabian Saldana (Spring Valley, Ill./Hall) got a hand on it, but couldn't punch it away, and Jordan Leihser was there to knock it in.
No could score in the first period of extra time, and as the second period wore on, a draw became the most probably outcome.
Hansen had a good chance in the box in the final minutes of the second period of overtime. He ran down the left line, worked his way into the 18 and was knocked down before he could get a shot off. The official didn't award a penalty kick, and soon, the Beavers were closing in on the win.
With less than two minutes remaining in extra time, Blackburn's Adrian Cosgaya won a ball off the defense in the back, turned and placed it into the left upper 90 to seal the win.
Eureka (2-10-1, 0-7-0) will play its final home match of the 2019 season on Thursday against Spalding at 3 p.m.