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Bonnies Roar Back; Late Rally Sends Women's Soccer To 3-3 Draw vs. Binghamton

Sydney Cerza reacts to her successful penalty kick attempt in the final minute of regulation. (Photo: Scott Eddy)
Sydney Cerza reacts to her successful penalty kick attempt in the final minute of regulation. (Photo: Scott Eddy)

Three Keys To The Game

  • Binghamton seized momentum with the first goal during the 12th minute
  • Jessica Scruggs' run through the box and finish at the near post at 60' started a run of three unanswered Bonnies goals
  • Sydney Cerza forced a draw with her penalty kick goal as the clock ticked down to a minute left in regulation

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – The 2018 season opener for the St. Bonaventure women's soccer team was not short on drama.

Down by three goals with just over 30 minutes remaining, the Bonnies roared back to force overtime and ultimately a 3-3 draw with visiting Binghamton Friday night at the Marra Athletics Complex.

Binghamton dominated the first half, striking in the 12th minute with a Kayla Saager goal. The Bearcats took a two-goal advantage to intermission when Saager assisted Ryan Reilly in the 37th minute.

Genna Michitti gave Binghamton, co-America East regular season champions in 2017, what seemed to be a convincing 3-0 lead in the 54th minute, but the Bonnies would not stop fighting.

Jessica Scruggs put the Bonnies on the board by beating two defenders in the box and sending a shot off the Binghamton goalie and to the net at the near post. Bearcats keeper Mackenzie Hanna made a diving stab, but the ball ricocheted away into the net for a 3-1 tally in the 60th minute.

Seventeen minutes later, Sabrina Sousa-Sampson got the Bonnies right back in it as she received a pass from Scruggs who won a volley just past midfield. Sampson did the rest with a lightning quick strike from over 20 yards out through three defenders to bring the hosts within one.

Binghamton had an opportunity to push its lead back to two, but Bonnies keeper Lauren Malcolm made a great stop on Saager's one-on-one opportunity in the 82nd minute. Malcolm rushed out of the box, blocking Saager's shot to preserve a one-goal deficit.

There was high drama in the waning seconds as a Bearcats foul in the box set up Sydney Cerza with a penalty kick opportunity. With the clock showing just more than a minute to play, Cerza drilled her attempt into the back of the net for the tie.

"Credit to the girls, we showed fight and showed heart," Bonnies head coach Steve Brdarski said. "Jess getting that goal was our spark; that was all we needed. Last year we were a team that struggled scoring goals and with confidence and she got us going. Sabrina's was a world-class goal and Sydney came through with the PK; what a goal."

The defenses held through 20 minutes of extra time, forcing a draw.

"In the first 10 minutes of overtime we really went after them, Isabelle LaBarbera got in behind a couple of times and we just needed a final pass we couldn't give," Brdarski said. "I'm so proud of the effort and the team spirit showing on the field."

Malcolm finished with 11 saves for the Bonnies.

St. Bonaventure is back in action Sunday at Kent State for a 1 p.m. opening kick.

--By Scott Eddy, Director of Athletics Communications

For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @GoBonnies and get women's soccer updates @BonniesWSoccer. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook at /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.