Oct. 31, 2004
Buffalo, N.Y. - Senior Chase Franklin scored less than two minutes into overtime lifting the Greyhounds to a 3-2 win over Canisius in Buffalo, N.Y. on Sunday. Franklin's game-winner keeps Head Coach Mark Mettrick's unbeaten overtime record in tact, but more importantly, keeps Loyola unbeaten in the MAAC with a 7-0 record this season.
"Canisius made it very difficult for us to win today," says Mettrick. "They came in with great motivation and did exactly what they need to do to win. We did very well to come away with six points this weekend."
In its final road game of the regular season, Loyola's offense was focused from the start and scored in the game's ninth minute. After clearing a Canisius corner kick, sophomore Danny Wheelan dribbled into Loyola's offensive zone and found freshman Frank Spanos on the right side. Spanos did the rest with his high shot past Canisius goalkeeper Matt Houghton.
The early lead, however, would disappear before the half when Chris Robey put the Golden Griffens on the board with his shot inside the left post. Robey would hurt the `Hounds again in the 61st minute, scoring an opportunistic goal when Loyola keeper Justin Chelland lost track of a loose ball in front of the cage.
"Down 2-1 in windy and cold conditions, we did well to come back," says Mettrick. I'm proud of the way our guys hung in there."
Trailing 2-1 with less than 12 minutes left in regulation, senior Kevin Nash sent a pass to sophomore Omar Alfonso, whose cross found the head of junior Vinnie Piscopo. The resulting goal was Piscopo's team-leading sixth of the season and Loyola would go to overtime for the fourth time this year.
The `Hounds quickly ended the extra period and the game when sophomore Rade Kokovic took a corner kick at 91:28. Franklin would come up with the game-winning header and improved Loyola's overtime unbeaten streak to 27 games. The Greyhounds have also won six of their last seven games while Mettrick is 16-0-8 in overtime matches at Loyola.
The Greyhounds, now 9-5-1 on the year, can wrap up their sixth straight Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference regular season title next weekend. Loyola hosts strong Marist and Siena sides at home next Friday and Sunday.