FLUSHING, N.Y. (Sept. 15, 2018) - Kevin Quituizaca's corner kick in the 64th minute of play was put home by Alejandro de Otero, with that goal providing the difference in a 3-2 victory for the Queens College men's soccer team over preseason conference favorite District of Columbia on Saturday (Sept. 15) at the Queens College Soccer Field.
Queens (3-2-1, 1-0 ECC) struck for the first goal just shy of the quarter-hour mark as Saufyane Ilbuodo was pulled down in the penalty area by UDC keeper Joao Brusamolin. The foul was given and the penalty awarded, which is when András Breuer stepped to the spot and beat Brusamolin near-side post. Breuer's fourth goal of the season---and fourth penalty-kick goal of the year as well--put the Knights ahead 1-0 but UDC responded in the 32nd minute with a penalty kick opportunity of their own. Off a free kick, the Queens defense committed a handball in the box which gave the Firebirds a one-on-one opportunity from the spot. ECC Preseason Player of the Year Gabriel Torres drilled a shot past Queens keeper Michael Bolvin---who guessed correctly but could not stop the shot---to level the game at 1-all. UDC scored three minutes later to take a 2-1 lead into halftime; Michael Agboola fed Kelvin Herrera on the far wing, and a cross into the box found Pierre LaNoire on a high hop. After settling the ball down, the Firebirds attacker lobbed a shot past a diving Bolvin to give the visitors the edge.
In the second half, Queens opened play on its heels as the Firebirds had several quality chances on net. The narrative quickly changed in the 58th minute as Emgi Gousse started a counterattack and fed Ilbuodo who dribbled and danced around a diving Brusamolin to score in the empty net and even the game up at two. Several minutes later, a near-side corner opportunity from Quituizaca found its way into the six-yard box where de Otero deftly nudged the ball into the net in front of a crush of UDC defenders. That goal proved to be the difference as UDC's best chance came a few minutes later when Marcus Mottley's header across the goal-mouth was parried away by Minas Karagiorgis to preserve the lead.
The contest was competitive and fairly even throughout with UDC winning the shots battle by an 18-16 margin. Corner kicks also favored the Firebirds (6-3) but Bolvin's sharp play and six saves kept Queens both in the game and then ahead of the opposition to record the win in the conference opener.
Queens will host Saint Thomas Aquinas on Saturday (Sept. 22) as the Knights look to improve on their unblemished conference record. Kick-off is set for 3 p.m.