Pair of Duncan Goals Bookend Comeback Win over Grizzlies
SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. (September 7, 2013) -- Junior forward Ryan Duncan continued his torrid output this weekend, this time notching the Golden Eagles' first and final tallies as John Brown battled back from a halftime deficit, handing Georgia Gwinnett a 3-2 loss in day two of the Quality Inn Fall Classic.
The Grizzlies (3-2-0) were fresh off a convincing 3-1 victory over Oklahoma City on Friday and looked to continue its strong play moving into Saturday.
The Golden Eagles had other plans as a pair of Duncan goals and a timely finish from sophomore midfielder Cory Cole vaulted JBU to a win after a disappointing 2-1 defeat to Concordia (Neb.) just a day earlier.
"I thought Georgia Gwinnett was the strongest team we have seen so far this year," noted head coach Scott Marksberry of the team's marquee victory. "Down 2-1 at the half, we could have mailed in a second-half effort and conceded any number of goals in the final 45 minutes. I am extremely proud of how hard the boys played in the second half. Now we know that we can work our way back into a game.
"We'll look to get our legs back underneath us after a tough weekend and prepare for another tough match next weekend."
The Golden Eagles found the scoreboard first when Duncan landed his first goal of the match in the 8th minute. Junior midfielder Martin Gonzalez started the play by slipping a through ball to Duncan, who made a perfect run up the right flank. Duncan made no mistake, beating the Grizzly netminder for a 1-0 lead.
Georgia Gwinnett's constant pressure in the first half finally paid off in the 21st minute as the Grizzlies tied the match at one apiece. Not finished with its scoring output in the first half, GGC took the lead in the 43rd minute when a corner kick bounced off bodies in the John Brown box that was finally finished by a Grizzly, handing the visitors the one-goal advantage.
John Brown found itself out-shot 11-5 in the first half. Starting keeper Pablo Garcia turned aside two other Grizzly chances in the first frame.
With the sun no longer in its eyes, the Golden Eagles came out a different squad in the first half, maintaining greater possession and connecting on more passes. JBU pressure in the 54th minute resulted in a corner kick, one of four Golden Eagle corner kicks in the half. Sophomore midfielder Eli Simonsen laid a perfect ball into the box that Cole landed a foot on just yards away from the goal line. Cole made no mistake, firing a shot to the near side and handing John Brown the equalizing strike.
In the 56th minute, Garcia came up huge again for JBU as the netminder made a point-blank save and even corralled the rebound effort off a Grizzly foot, yards away from retaking the lead.
Garcia continued to hold the Golden Eagles in the match, making three saves after the Cole goal. Finally, in the 86th minute, JBU was able to break through for the game-winner when sophomore striker Zari Prescod alluded two defenders at the half line, blazing past while shooting a pass to sophomore forward Zeke Zumbro in the middle of the attacking zone. Zumbro was able to flick the ball towards a streaking Duncan before absorbing a foul. Duncan one-touched Zumbro's pass barely off the outside of his right foot from the left side, beating GGC keeper Lewis Sharpe low, under the arm.
After staving off a couple late-minute chances by Georgia Gwinnett, John Brown secured its second come-from-behind win of the season, moving to 3-2-0 on the year.
Garcia (3-2-0) picked up his third victory of the year for JBU while Sharpe (3-2-0) absorbed the loss for the Grizzlies.
John Brown's schedule doesn't get any easier as the Golden Eagles welcome No. 4 MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) to Alumni Field on Saturday (Sept. 14). Kick-off is slated for 4:00 p.m.