WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – Freshman Lucas Chaude (Montville) came off the bench to score his first career goal on his second career shot with 3:15 left in sudden death overtime, carrying the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team back from two goals down for a 3-2 non-conference win over Salem State University Tuesday afternoon at Thomas Nevers Field.
Having beaten Salem (4-3-0) the previous eight times by a composite score of 24-1, Eastern (5-4-0) trailed by two goals 13 minutes into the second half before rallying for its fourth home win against one loss this season.
Max Parent (Yarmouth, MA) cut the Salem lead in half when he scored on a pass from Nicholas Warren (Southbury) after hitting the right post moments earlier, and Warren forced overtime with his first goal since 2014 with 13 minutes left on a header at the left post on a cross from Griffin Luczek (Lee, NH).
With time running out, Xavier Doran (Hebron) won the ball at midfield and sent it ahead on the right wing to Justin Grant (Cromwell). Grant caught up to the ball to the right of the box sent a long crossing pass through the box. Chaude, unmarked and hustling in from the weak side, took the perfect pass in stride directly in front of the net and one-timed the ball past Salem keeper Chris Jimenez from point-blank range in the 107th minute. Chaude entered the game with seven minutes left in the first half and remained on the field for the second half and overtime.
The contest nearly ended with a minute left in the first overtime when dangerous Salem freshman Mayele Malango found space alone on the left wing and drilled a ground ball past Eastern keeper Ryan Murphy (Cromwell) and toward the right corner, where it rolled inches past the right post.
Three minutes into the second overtime, Nahuel Aligbay again nearly put the win in the books for the Vikings, but Murphy was able to smother his low shot from the right of the box by diving to his right.
For his part, Jimenez came up with successive saves on shots by Grant and JD Stearns (Bolton) later in overtime before Chaude ended matters with his first career goal.
Malango and Aligbay had staked Salem to its 2-0 lead, Malango recording his ninth goal in seven matches with a drive past Murphy inside the right corner of the netting in the 28th minute, and Aligbay taking Malango's perfect pass and beating Murphy on a 1 on 1 bid early in the second half.
Eastern outshot Salem 25-18, with Malango and Aligbay combing for 11 of their team's shots. Murphy made six saves and Jimenez nine.
Eastern visits Plymouth State University in a Little East Conference match Saturday at 1 p.m.