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Mitchell, Akpan Notch Goals Late in Second Half as No. 9 Harvard Downs Providence, 2-1

Pictured: Andre Akpan scored his ninth goal of the season on a penalty kick at 89:46
Photo courtesy: David Silverman Photography

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Desmond Mitchell and Andre Akpan each tallied goals in the final minutes of action to propel the ninth-ranked Harvard men’s soccer team to a 2-1 non-conference victory at Providence Tuesday afternoon. Austin Harms stopped two shots, as Harvard won its 10th game of the season and improve to 10-2-1 overall.

The Crimson and Friars battled to a scoreless first half, with the Friars holding a 6-4 edge in shots. Providence (5-6-3) also earned all three corner kicks of the first half as the teams looked to create plays offensively. Midway through the second stanza, Harvard goalkeeper Austin Harms made his second save of the day, blocking a header attempt by David Datilus at 73:25. Moments later, the Harvard defense blocked a shot in front by Marc Cintron, keeping Providence off the scoreboard.

Late in the second half, Adam Rousmaniere placed a cross pass in the middle of the box and Mitchell scored on a shot from seven yards out to put Harvard on top, 1-0, at 87:51. The Friars stormed right back, scoring on a redirection by Marc Cintron with only 27 seconds remaining in regulation. Just moments later, Harvard was awarded a penalty kick and Akpan capitalized for his team-best ninth goal of the year, clinching the dramatic victory for the Crimson.

The Friars owned a 10-7 advantage in shots, and earned five corner kicks, compared to two for the Crimson. Harvard returns to the Ivy League portion of its schedule Saturday, as the Crimson hosts Princeton at 1:30 p.m.