Broz Heads Pirates Past UNC Wilmington
Sept. 20, 2009
GREENVILLE, N.C. – With 1:43 remaining in the second overtime, Amanda Broz headed a ball past UNC Wilmington goalkeeper Chandler Follett to give East Carolina a 4-3 victory over an in-state rival Sunday afternoon at Bunting Field. The goal is the sixth of Broz’ career and the fourth game-winner.
The victory gives ECU (5-1-2) three straight over the Seahawks (4-4-0), its longest winning streak in the series since 1997-2000.
“That was a crazy game,” head coach Rob Donnenwirth said. “Both teams had lots of chances and it was back-and-forth the whole way.”
UNC Wilmington pressured East Carolina 40 seconds in when Stephanie Rose took a shot that ECU goalkeeper Berit Hansen turned aside. At 7:18 the Seahawks had another chance when Erin Pardini took a pass on the right side and was one-on-one with Hansen, but Hansen made the save to keep the game scoreless.
The Pirates struck for their first goal at 12:27 as Chrissy Gratz broke through the defense and passed to Bailey Wilcox, whose shot hit off the left goalpost and caromed into the right side of the net. Wilcox has scored a goal in the team’s past three home contests. The assist was Gratz' team-leading fourth of the season.
UNCW’s Ashley Myers evened the score on a penalty kick at 25:17. The East Carolina defense was called for a foul on Myers when she was in the goal box, giving her the penalty shot. Hansen got a hand on the attempt, but the ball bounced into the right corner of the net. The goal stopped Hansen’s scoreless minutes streak at 311:42. She had not allowed a goal since 68:35 into the contest at Wake Forest Sept. 6.
At the 35:02 mark the Pirates had another scoring chance as they received a corner kick and Leah Bagonis headed the ball toward the goal. Bagonis’ header hit the ground directly in front of her and then bounced over the net. ECU’s last chance of the first half occurred with only 10 seconds remaining as Alexis Foltz fired a shot, but hit the right goalpost and the ball bounced aside.
Less than two minutes into the second half, the Pirates looked to have a sure goal when they had a free kick and Hali Oughton had the ball and an open goal on the left side. Oughton took a shot, but two UNC Wilmington players got their feet on the ball and knocked it aside.
The Seahawks responded as Myers scored her second goal of the contest to put the visitors ahead 2-1 at 49:33. Rose started the play by pushing the ball through the ECU defense and passing to an open Myers, who converted on the chance.
Less than four minutes later, following a foul on UNC Wilmington, the Pirates knotted the score when Jessica Woodward took a free kick from 25 yards away and scored. It was Woodward’s second goal of the season.
East Carolina scored again to take a 3-2 lead at 63:49 when Amanda Malkiewicz tallied her third goal of the season. Malkiewicz beat Follett and shot the ball into the open net. Jessica Swanson recorded the assist on the play, her second of the season.
The lead did not last long, however, as UNCW’s Jenna Evans scored 2:05 later to tie the game at 3-3. Evans’ shot bounced off the hands of a diving Hansen and into the lower right corner of the net.
Neither team was able to register the deciding goal in regulation or the first overtime period. Both teams took four shots in the first extra session with the goalkeepers each making two saves. East Carolina had the best scoring opportunity in the first overtime when it fired three shots following a corner kick with less than one minute remaining in the period.
“I give our girls a lot of credit,” Donnenwirth said. “They played a very tough game on Friday night and it took a lot out of them. You could tell right from the beginning that their legs were a little tired. For them to fight back through two overtimes Friday and again today is a credit to them.”
UNC Wilmington took the first shot in the second overtime, but it was Broz who tallied the winner on ECU’s only shot of the period. The Pirates received a corner kick that was taken by Malkiewicz, who found Broz on the far post for the game-winning header. It was Broz’ first goal since last season’s regular-season contest against Memphis on Oct. 26.
East Carolina resumes action next weekend, opening Conference USA competition at home with Rice and Houston. The Pirates play Rice Friday at 4 p.m. and complete the weekend Sunday with an 11:30 a.m. contest against the Cougars.