Dayton, Ohio - The fifth-seeded Fordham Rams (12-4-2) defeated the fourth-seeded Dayton Flyers, (9-8-2) 3-2, in the quarterfinals of the 2017 Atlantic 10 Men's Soccer Championship, held at Dayton's Baujan Field.
A wild scoring affair began in the 35th minute when Fordham tallied the first goal of the game. Connor DeFillips and Bart Dziedzic played passes to each other up the right side, finishing with Dziedzic having possession in the box. Dziedzic quickly turned and shot the ball far post, netting his second goal of the season.
Dayton almost replied with the equalizer in the 40th minute, as Jonas Fjeldberg hit the post leaving the game as a 1-0 score after 45 minutes.
The Flyers would find the tying marker in the 65th minute off the boot of Thor Helgason. Rok Taneski worked his way to the end line, sending a cross back toward the penalty spot. The ball deflected off Kyran McGhan-George right to Helgason for a sliding finish past Fordham goalkeeper Rashid Nuhu.
Ten minutes later, Fordham recaptured the lead at 2-1 in the 75th minute. Dayton cleared out a Fordham corner kick to Rams’ defender Vincenzo Zuccala, short of midfield. Zuccala played a long ball right into the chest of Matthew Lewis, deflecting the ball to Joergen Oland. Oland immediately fired the ball into the left side of the goal for his career-high fourth goal of the season.
The Flyers responded with another rally to knot the game at two in the 78th minute as the back-and-forth affair continued. Ben Leba took the initial attempt, deflecting off a Fordham defender to Nick Hagenkord. Hagenkord got the ball to James Haupt for a volley shot to the upper right side of the goal for his fourth of the year.
Fordham, the defending Atlantic 10 champion, would not be denied the win, however, coming up with the game-winning marker in the 83rd minute. Janos Loebe found his way down the left side, putting a perfect cross into the box for Jannik Loebe. Jannik finished into the left side of the goal from seven yards out for his sixth goal of the season. It marked Jannik’s second game-winning goal of the season, and the fourth consecutive Atlantic 10 Championship that he has scored a goal in.
In net, Nuhu made two saves to record his 12th win of the season, while Federico Barrios has one save over the final 45 minutes of action for Dayton.
The Rams now await the winner of the Saint Louis-Massachusetts game (Sunday at 1:00 PM) in the first Atlantic 10 Championship semifinal on Friday, November 10th, starting at 4:30 PM at Dayton’s Baujan Field.