GREEN BAY, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - Less than two minutes into the second overtime period, senior Alonso Flores (Chicago, Ill.) scored a header goal from on the doorstep of the box to lift the Green Bay (2-1-0) men's soccer team to a 2-1 double overtime victory over Northern Illinois (0-1-0), closing out its three-game homestand.
"We talk about set pieces and how important they are in dictating wins and losses. We lost to Marquette on a set piece and tonight we won on a set piece," said head coach Dan Popik. "That's a good NIU team that's going to win a lot of games this year and I couldn't be more proud of this team with the effort they gave."
Whitney Browne (Brooklyn Park, Minn.) served a great ball to Kirby Allen (Appleton, Wis.) who was drifting to the back post while Flores reran his route in the box and had a great finish to cap off the win for the Phoenix.
Green Bay's defense held tough to keep the game scoreless at the half. With 31 minutes remaining in the opening half Northern Illinois was making a charge at the net when Green Bay's Sebastian Xiong (Cottage Grove, Wis.) stepped up and broke up the play.
"Our back line did fantastic tonight, inserting two new players into the back line with Dylan (McCarthy) seeing his first minutes in a collegiate game and Sebastian (Xiong) and Sam (Ramirez) did a great job against great players on the NIU side," said Popik.
With 37:00 minutes remaining in the game, senior Ryan Wehking (St. Louis, Mo.) attempted to clear a ball and slipped, injuring his ankle. Wehking was helped off the field and did not return to action.
Filling in for Wehking was redshirt sophomore Max Nimmo (Janesville, Wis.), making his collegiate debut with the Phoenix.
"I can't say enough unbelievable things about Max who comes into a game, makes a good break-away save at half time, and comes out for crosses. I'm very proud of him, he works extremely hard and he got his opportunity and did extremely well," Popik said. "He did a great job tonight."
Green Bay had a chance to put the first goal on the board with 33:05 to play when Xiong made a pass to Kirby Allen (Appleton, Wis.) on a break down the left side of the box. Allen fired a shot from the far left side of the box but Allen's shot was too wide.
Six minutes later, Allen's shot was spot on when Cheenuj Shong (Milwaukee, Wis.) pass him the ball on the left side. NIU goalkeeper Jordan Godsey stepped up into the box to defend and Allen's shot rolled right into the right side of the goal for the 1-0 lead.
Less than five minutes later, NIU's James Stevenson passed ahead to Gael Rivera who found the back of the net from the right side of the box, knotting the game 1-1.
Though Northern Illinois outshot Green Bay 10-4 in the second period, Green Bay's defense prevailed, sending the game into overtime.
Green Bay outshot NIU 2-0 in the first overtime and with 1:56 remaining back-up goalie Max Nimmo (Janesville, Wis.) made a great save off a free kick by the Huskies.
Nimmo picked up his first collegiate win as the Phoenix prevailed, taking a winning record on the road Sunday to Niagara.
"This team that many people count out, will not stop working and will not stop fighting and I can't be more proud of them for the effort they gave tonight. It's a deserving win," Popik said.
NEXT ON THE SCHEDULE... Green Bay has a quick turnaround as it kicks off its longest road stretch of the season with a four-game stint beginning at Niagara (1-0-1) Sunday, Sept. 2 at 12 p.m. before preparing for the Dayton Tournament being Sept. 7-9.
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