WOLFVILLE, N.S - The Acadia Axemen and the UPEI Panthers settled for a 2-2 draw despite every effort by both teams in the closing minutes to score a go-ahead goal.
It did not take long for the Panthers to find the back of the net. After taking a corner kick, Sam Smiley (Stratford, P.E.I.) followed his pass to the net and picked up his first goal of the year to give the Panthers a 1-0 lead. His goal was good enough to have him named the Panther's Player of the Game.
The Panthers struck again shortly after the opening goal. A free kick from far out was deflected off a diving header by Mo San Aung (Charlottetown, P.E.I.) beat Acadia's keeper Nic Jeffries (Rothesay, N.B.), bringing their lead to two.
With the shots on goal stacking up against Acadia and none of their own, the game looked to be getting out of hand for the Axemen. However, midfielder Spender Buck brought the Axemen back within one with a goal at the 28-minute mark.
At half-time, the Panthers posted 5 shots on goal in the first half and a 2-1 lead.
At 58 minute mark, the Axemen hit the crossbar, were able to get the rebound, but were denied again by a member of the Panthers defence who blocked a shot on the goalline.
The Axemen were revived in the second half, looking like a new team with a much stronger will to win. Their efforts paid off when Gordon McLaughlin (Peterborough, Ont.) rifled a pass from Zane Brennan (Fredericton, N.B.) into the low corner of the net, bringing the score even at 2-2. McLaughlin's clutch goal earned him the Subway Player of the Game award.
UPEI Panther Josh MacKillop (Sydney, N.S.) went down around the 70-minute mark and would need some attention on his left leg.
The game's final two minutes were full of chances for the Axemen, but they would have to settle with the 2-2 draw.
The Axemen play their last game of the season on Friday night when they host the first place Cape Breton Capers.
The Panthers take on Dalhousie on Sunday to finish off their weekend.
Submitted by Theodore Giesen, Acadia Athletics Communications Office