Bulldogs Win On Giftopoulos' Double OT Winner
Aug. 27, 2017
PEORIA, Ill. – The Gonzaga Bulldogs led Bradley on the road heading into the 87th minute, before Bradley tied the match and sent it to double-overtime, but Austin Giftopoulos cleaned up a pinball corner kick off Jalen Crisler and Ben White to seal the 2-1 season-opening win on Sunday afternoon.
The Zags were playing the Braves on short notice after both teams’ travel plans to Houston were cancelled because of Hurricane Harvey.
The Bulldogs had seized the lead just 28 minutes in off a free kick via Nick Ulowetz and White that Christo Michaelson headed home. The Zags seemed headed for a shutout victory until Brad Schindler headed home the equalizer less than three minutes before the final horn. In a strange moment, one minute before the goal the Zags had goal called back because the referee ruled the thrower had taken too many steps.
Giftopoulos made sure the Zags got the victory with just four minutes left in the second overtime. The Zags led 6-1 in shots on goal and 13-4 in overall shots, with Ben Willis earning the win in goal for GU, as his defense did not make him make a save.
"Disappointed we gave up that goal on what we knew was coming, but I am very proud of our response,” Gonzaga head coach Einar Thorarinsson said. “We had our moments offensively today, but our defense and backline especially played very well.”
The Zags will bring the 1-0 record home for the Gonzaga Soccer Tournament running September 1 and 3 at Luger Field. The Bulldogs open with UC Riverside at 7 pm on Friday. Live links are available at GoZags.com.
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