Oct. 4, 2013
NORFOLK, Va. -- Senior Brad Doliner connected on a golden goal in the 98th minute – his second goal of the game – to lift Kentucky men’s soccer to a dramatic 2-1 win at Old Dominion, in front of a lively homecoming crowd of 854, on a humid Friday night at the ODU Soccer Complex.
“It was great,” UK head coach Johan Cedergren said postgame. “We really focused on being more physical in both boxes. We did a fantastic job defending our 18. The back four, Cally did great, the midfield did great in helping. I’ve been saying that I know we are good team and it is just a matter of getting the guys that confidence and developing that edge. We are getting a lot closer, it was a good win today and there isn’t a guy on the team that didn’t do well.”
Kentucky (3-5, 1-1 Conference USA) got heroic performances from Doliner, who recorded his first career two-goal game – and a career-high six-save performance from sophomore goalkeeper Callum Irving in the win. UK got a go-ahead goal from Doliner in the 52nd minute on a penalty kick, with ODU evening up the game in the 77th minute.
A native of Cape Elizabeth, Maine, Doliner struck for the game-winning tally in the 98th minute, as Isak Krogstad lofted a corner into the box, with it finding junior forward Justin Laird, who was making his first career start. Laird found Doliner just inside the 18-yard box, with the senior firing a hard-hit shot that sailed across the goal mouth and in at the far post for the golden goal.
Irving, a 6-foot native of Vancouver, British Columbia, equaled his career high with six saves, including several acrobatic, diving plays to keep the ball from the net. Irving made four saves in the second half and two dramatic saves in the overtime period.
“Great play by Cally,” Cedergren said. “There were a couple of times today that I was sure the ball was in the goal and he came up with the save. There were a couple of times when there were cleats flying around his head and he did not back down. Cally is a guy that will give you 110-percent. He will work as hard as he can in practice. Coach Casper is a fantastic goalkeeper coach and he has been working hard with both Cally and Jack (Van Arsdale). I am really blessed to have two great keepers.”
The win for the Wildcats came against an ODU team that entered the game with just a pair of losses and two strong results last week, including a tie at No. 8 Maryland and a 2-1 win at No. 9 Tulsa. Old Dominion hosted UK in its homecoming doubleheader, with the Monarchs featuring a postgame fireworks show in the first C-USA game ever played at the ODU Soccer Complex. UK held ODU – a team with 14 goals in its first seven games – to just one goal, coming off a corner kick.
UK got on the board in the 52nd minute, as the Wildcats had an open look at goal inside the six-yard box for Tyler Riggs. With the ball crossed into Riggs’ head in the box, he was taken down while leaping in the air by an undercutting defender, forcing the penalty. Doliner stepped up a finished the penalty, his second in the last two games, for his third goal of 2013.
ODU got on the board in the 77th minute after a flurry of pressure following UK’s go-ahead goal. On a corner kick from the near side, from Ivan Militar, Michael Nelson came rushing from the far side of the 18-yard box, unmarked, getting a hard-hit header past a diving Irving for his first goal of the year.
Old Dominion (4-3-1, 1-1 C-USA) finished with 17-14 advantage in shots, with both teams firing six corners. It marked just the second game that UK had been outshot in 2013, with UK leading or tying in corner kicks in all eight games.
Kentucky will return to action on Tuesday, hosting Evansville at 7 p.m. ET at the UK Soccer Complex.
GAME NOTES: Junior forward Justin Laird made his first career start … Freshman Kaelon Fox was UK’s first sub of the game … Senior Brad Doliner is now a perfect 2-for-2 on penalty kicks … Doliner netted his first career golden goal … UK won the first ever meeting between the two schools … Senior Steven Perinovic won a season-high 10-of-14 contested header attempts … The win marked UK’s first overtime game since the C-USA Tournament quarterfinals in 2012, with UK’s last over-time win coming in a 2-1 result vs. High Point in Columbia, S.C., in 2011.