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Bisons edge Jacksonville 3-2 to close out A-Sun portion of schedule

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Oct. 29, 2005

Box Score

Bisons edge Jacksonville 3-2 with last-minute goal

It was fitting that on Senior Day for the Lipscomb University Bisons soccer team that a senior would score the winning goal.

Midfielder Andy Irvine, honored along with three of his teammates in pre-game ceremonies, scored with 56 seconds left in the game to give the Bisons a 3-2 Atlantic Sun victory over visiting Jacksonville Saturday afternoon. It was also Irvine's first goal of the season.

"That was a great game winner on a Senior Day," said Lipscomb Coach Charles Morrow.

The last-minute goal capped one of the most physical games of the season for the Bisons. It also was a great comeback for the Bisons who were still frustrated over a 3-2 loss to North Florida Thursday night at home.

"I thought Jacksonville was a better team than UNF," Morrow said. "After such a tough loss it was unbelievable how we battled. In year's past this team might have come out after a tough loss, hit some adversity and then folded. But give our guys credit.

"The Jacksonville coach came up to me after the game and told me our guys really battled all day and played within themselves. That's the most complimentary thing a coach can hear. Every college team, no matter what the sport, wants to be able to recognize its own strengths and weaknesses and play to them. Sometimes being able to do that is better than being the most talented team."

Bisons midfielder Scott Mason wasted little time getting his team on the scoreboard. At the 3:42 mark of the first period Mason scored on a perfect header shot off of a picture-perfect pass from the right side of the field by defender Micah Johnson.

Mason finished with one goal and two assists.

That was the only goal scored in the first period with both teams making seven shots.

In the second period both teams increased their intensity with emotions running high on both sides of the field.

Jacksonville tied the game at 62:38 mark of the second period. Forward Tommy Krizanovic scored from about 10 feet out. The ball was knocked around a few times in front of the Bisons net before forward Anton Axelsson found Krizanovic with a short pass.

Jacksonville took a 2-1 lead at 70:19 when forward Akeem Priestley scored. With a low line drive shot from about 18 feet out, Midfielder Brian Blackburn was given the assist.

Down 2-1 the Bisons refused to give up.

Forward Ben Page, who has missed with a shot off the cross bar in the first two minutes of the second period, and who missed a scoring opportunity later in the period, got his revenge with a game-tying goal at 26 seconds after Priestley's goal.

Page's shot came from about 10 feet out. It went into the left corner. Mason and midfielder Josh Cline earned the assists.

"Teams continue to underestimate Ben Page and he continues to take advantage of that," Morrow said. We need to get him some help at the forward position next season to take some of the pressure off of him."

That set the stage for Irvine's game-winner at the 89:04 mark. Page kicked the ball to Mason who headed it

Mason headed the ball off of a corner kick by Page. The ball went to the left side of the box. Irvine came in and kicked it past Jacksonville goalkeeper Joey Sanchez.

Both goalkeepers played outstanding games, with both Sanchez and the Bisons J.D. Murphy making key saves in the second half with a number of diving plays. Murphy picked up a victory in his last collegiate home game. He made six saves. Sanchez made seven saves.

"This game really meant a lot to J.D.," Morrow said. "He played well in his last home game."

The Bisons made 19 shots, 12 in the second period. They had 10 shots on goal, led by Page with six. Jacksonville made 14 shots on goal with six players each getting two shots in a well-balanced attack.

Jacksonville held a 5-3 edge in corner kicks.

The Bisons are 5-9-1. 2-6-0 in the A-Sun. Jacksonville is 6-9-1, 2-4-1 in the conference.