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Bobcats Drop Heartbreaker to Royals, 3-2

Sept. 24, 2012 CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Felipe Netto scored with less than a minute remaining in regulation to lead the Queens University of Charlotte men’s soccer team to a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Lees-McRae College on Saturday evening in Conference Carolinas play, after the Bobcats rallied from a 2-0 deficit to equalize late in the second half.

Queens (4-2, 2-0 CC) edged Lees-McRae (2-6, 1-1 CC) by a 14-12 margin in shots, including a 5-3 advantage in the first half, in a physical match that featured 29 fouls and nine cautions.

James Galvani (High Wycombe, England) and Scott Hudgins (Fort Myers, Fla.) both found the back of the net for the Bobcats, as goalkeeper Thomas Rusling (Sheffield, England) notched his second assist of the season. Galvani paced the Bobcats with four attempts at goal as Rusling made five saves between the pipes. 

Netto, Gersi Cilingiri, and Thiago Andrade both tallied a goal for Queens, as Erick Suarez, Diego Suarez, and Drew Walsh each recorded an assist. John Rush was called up to make two saves, while Andrade paced the Royals with four attempts at goal.

The match remained scoreless until midway through the 13th minute when Walsh and Diego Suarez linked up to put Cilingiri in position for the breakthrough, giving Queens an early 1-0 lead. The Royals doubled the advantage to 2-0 in the closing seconds of the 22nd minute, when Andrade converted from the penalty spot. 

Queens would carry the two-goal advantage into the second half, when Galvani created space for himself and found the back of the net in the 49th minute to halve the margin to 2-1 with his third strike of the season. The Bobcats continued to press the attack in search of an equalizer, winning a free kick just outside the area in the 62nd minute which Smith curled just over the bar.

Hudgins would level proceedings late in the 82nd minute, directing a long free kick from Rusling into the back of the net to pull the Bobcats back on terms at 2-2. Queens responded in the 90th minute, snatching a late winner at the death when Erick Suarez set up Netto to give the Royals a decisive 3-2 lead. 

Lees-McRae returns to the pitch on Wednesday when the Bobcats travel to Belmont, N.C. to take on Belmont Abbey College in conference play at 3:30 p.m.