EVANS, GA – Senior Oliver Drankenhammar gave Francis Marion University a stunning 1-0 first-half lead, but top-seeded and second-ranked Young Harris College scored twice in the final 22 minutes to rally for a 2-1 victory in the first semifinal match of the 2018 Peach Belt Conference Men's Soccer Tournament, Friday morning (Nov. 2) in Evans, Ga.
The fourth-seeded Patriots end their season at 9-7-0, a three-win improvement over the 2017 campaign. Young Harris (16-0-0) advances to Sunday's championship match at noon against either Lander University or Clayton State University.
Drakenhammar converted a Mountain Lion turnover into a 1-0 FMU lead at the 22:58 mark. After intercepting a pass, the 6-6 forward dribbled past Young Harris goalkeeper Christian Kjellsby and slotted a 10-yard shot into an open goal. It was his sixth score of 2018 and the 16th of his four-year career.
Leading up to the opening score, neither attempted a shot over the opening 19 minutes. The Mountain Lions hit the post in the 42nd minute, but the half ended with the Patriots holding a 1-0 advantage.
Young Harris came out attacking in the second stanza, registering 12 shots over the first 23 minutes including a pair of attempts that clanged off the crossbar. Patriot freshman goalkeeper Kristoffer Gregenaes finished the match with a career-high equaling six saves, including four stops during that span. In fact, he repelled back-to-back shots in a five-second span in the 61st minute.
The Mountain Lions broke through with the equalizer at 68:10 when Seba Andreassen scored from the middle of the box. He also scored the match-winner at 79:15.
In the 84th minute, FMU freshman Sam Pollard over hit a free kick from 40 yards out that turned into a shot that glanced off the crossbar. Senior Julian Kersting had a long attempt saved by Kjellsby in the 85th minute, and Pollard had Francis Marion's final attempt at a tying goal at 87:20 when he corralled a loose ball following an FMU free kick, but his bounding shot from the top of the penalty area went just outside the right post.
Young Harris led 22-5 in shots and took all nine of the corner kicks featured in the match at Blanchard Woods Park.
Post-match comments from FMU head coach John Campbell
#2 Young Harris (16-0-0) def. Francis Marion Univ. (9-7-0) 2-1
Date: Nov 02, 2018 Attendance: 58
Weather: Rain | 67F (67F) | S 6
Goals by period 1 2 Tot
Francis Marion Univ. 1 0 - 1
Young Harris........ 0 2 - 2
0-1. 22:58 FMU Oliver Drakenhammar (6) (unassisted) - turnover in back, 11 beats keeper, left corner of goal
1-1. 68:10 YHC Seba Andreassen (6) (Dani Fischer) - 6 sends in from left, 14 finishes from middle of box
2-1. 79:15 YHC Seba Andreassen (7) (Carlos Gomez;Alex Jacq) - 7 sends from left to 11 at far post, 11 to 14, 14 in left corner
Shots: Francis Marion Univ. 5, Young Harris 22 ; Saves: Francis Marion Univ. 6 (Kristoffer Gregenaes 6), Young Harris 1 (Christian Kjellsby 1)