ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- Senior back Cooper D'Ambrosio (Andover) scored with one second left in sudden death overtime on his first shot of the season to lift the Eastern Connecticut State University men's soccer team to a 1-0 victory over No. 15 nationally-ranked Muhlenberg College Saturday night.
D'Ambrosio, a second-year transfer from the University of Hartford named the Little East Conference Defensive Player-of-the-Year last year, scored his second career goal at 1:09:59 to set off a celebration in the first meeting ever between the programs. With the ten-second countdown started, a Muhlenberg defender headed the ball out of the area. Eastern junior midfielder Danny Manfredi (Unionville) chased it down and volleyed the ball back into the area. Stationed in the upper right-hand corner of the box with is back to the goal, D'Ambrosio chested the ball to his feet, took one touch, turned, and left-footed a volley that sailed just inside the far left post as the horn sounded to beat Muhlenberg (1-1-0) freshman keeper Jordan Schreer.
Eastern (2-0-0), which shut out Babson College (No. 3 in New England in the final 2014 poll), was outshot, 18-13. Freshman keeper Ryan Murphy (Cromwell), matched Schreer with six saves to record his second shutout in as many career starts. Three of Murphy's saves came in overtime.
Muhlenberg, which compiled a final 15-2-3 record last year en route to the NCAA Division tournament Round of 16, had threatened in the 104th minute with consecutive shots, Murphy saving one and the other sailing wide. The Warriors countered in the 109th minute when first-year junior transfer Danny Manfredi (Farmington) sent a shot over the crossbar and freshman Kevin Zeppieri (Waterford) had his shot blocked with 109:17 gone.
Eastern visits Wesleyan University Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.