Late Comeback Sparks Citadel Past CSU, 3-2
CHARLESTON, S.C. - Over a span of three minutes the Citadel Bulldogs turned a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 lead following Nicole Levermann's goal at the 83:41 mark and the visiting Bulldogs held off several late challenges by Charleston Southern in recording the come from behind victory over the Buccaneers on Monday afternoon.
Rebecca Hollstegge and Toni Lashley spotted CSU (2-4-1) to a 2-0 lead in the second half, but Citadel (2-5) came back in the 80th minute as Mariana Garcia cracked the seal on the net with the Bulldog's first goal of the game. Vanessa Aponte and Levermann quickly followed over the next three minutes to hand the Bulldogs a lead they would not relinquish as Citadel took the win in the makeup game against the Buccaneers.
Citadel put the pressure on the Buccaneers early in the first half as Garcia and Aponte targeted the net, but both shots were denied by the Lady Bucs defense. On the other side of the field, Citadel keeper Sarah Katchen kept CSU off the scoreboard, lifting a shot by Hollstegge over the crossbar at the 9:44 mark to keep the score knotted up.
CSU would keep the pressure on goal in the first half, outshooting Citadel 13-9, but great defense by both sides kept the match scoreless heading into the break.
Hollstegge put Charleston Southern on the board on CSU's first shot attempt of the second half, receiving the pass from Tori Wright inside the box. Her shot deflected off Katchen's gloves and into the net at the 46:02 mark to put the Buccaneers up 1-0.
CSU peppered the net with four shots in the next four minutes, but were unable to find pay dirt again until the 63:56 mark when Gina Cox outraced Katchen to the ball in the upper left corner of the box and lofted a cross to Lashley in front of the open net. The junior forward connected on a header into the back of the net to double the Buccaneers lead with less than 30 minutes to play in the game.
Garcia took advantage of a crack in the CSU defense, collecting a corner kick from Anastasia Mesa and directed the ball through traffic in the box and into the back of the net at the 80:38 mark to cut the lead in half with 10 minutes to play in the contest.
Aponte followed less than 80 seconds later with the tying goal, collecting McKenzie Duncan's chip over the defense. Her shot from the top of the goal box clanged off the crossbar and down into the net at the 82:00 mark to knot the game up.
Levermann pushed the Bulldogs advantage less than two minutes later, dribbling through three CSU players and threaded the ball through three defenders from six yards out into the lower right corner of the net for the go-ahead goal as Citadel took their first lead of the contest.
The Bulldogs' defense held the Lady Bucs at bay the remainder of the contest as CSU was unable to mount a final attack to force the game into overtime as Charleston Southern fell 3-2.
CSU returns to the road on Thursday, September 20th as Charleston Southern begins Big South Conference play, traveling to Boiling Springs, N.C. to take on Gardner-Webb. Kickoff between the Buccaneers and the Runnin' Bulldogs is set for 6 p.m.