It was an eventful match Tuesday as the No.7 Clemson Tigers defeated Fordham by a score of 3-2 in a game that was settled in overtime at Historic Riggs Field in Clemson.
In the 100th minute of the match, Clemson’s Grayson Barber made a run down the left wing. With a quick move away from the net, where he delivered a ball to the middle of the top of the box. Alvaro Gomez was able to control and bury the ball into the left corner for the winning goal.
With his second assist of the game Barber helped Clemson achieve a perfect 6-0 start. With 28 goals so far this season, the Tigers have added 12 off the bench.
“Every win is a good win,” Clemson head coach Mike Noonan said. “One- goal wins show character. We came back after they scored the first goal. There was a very disappointing second goal given, but we came back again and actually scored two because I believe Grayson’s goal should have been a goal. It was a good win regardless.”
It was Fordham who struck first, scoring in the 23:33 minute of the match. After receiving a ball right up in front of the net, Fordham’s Sameer Fathazada scored his first career goal on an easy goal.
Exactly 10 minutes later at 33:33, Robbie Robinson scored the first of his brace, tying the match at 1-1. With time and room outside the box, Barber delivered a pin point pass onto the foot of Robinson directly in front of the left side of the net, setting Robinson up for an easy finish.
Robinson’s night did not stop there as the junior ended the first half putting the Tigers’ on top with a beautiful individual effort. After receiving a pass from Gomez at the top of the box, Robinson made a couple of nice moves positioning himself just outside the top right corner of the box.
Creating enough space between him and the defender, Robinson planted his foot and delivered a beautiful strike to the opposite side of the cage, giving Clemson a 2-1 lead and Robinson his seventh goal of the season,
“We’ve averaged more than three goals a game this year so far, so although it’s nice Robbie’s scoring, we don’t care who scores,” Noonan said. “It doesn’t matter who hooks up with each other for the goals as long as they’re coming.”
Looking comfortable with their lead, the Tigers fell to a detrimental mental error late in the second half, helping Fordham tie the game at 2-2 with just over 15 minutes left in the game. After a ball was sent high and into the box, Clemson captain Malik Mbaye accidentally mishead it, making its way into his own net and tying the game.
“Malik’s a warrior, coming back is what they do,” Noonan said. “You make mistakes and you come back from those mistakes. Malik is one of the best at doing so and that’s why he’s the captain of the team.”
The Tigers return to Historic Riggs Field on Friday against No.15 Duke. The match is set for 8 p.m.
—Photo courtesy Clemson Athletic Communications
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