Friday's three games proved why the ACC is considered the most exciting conference in the country. Virginia Tech-Wake Forest, Duke-Boston College and Maryland-Clemson produced 17 goals, dramatic comebacks and great action.
At 6-foot-6, Englishman Robert Edmans stands out on a soccer field, but even the highly touted Wake Forest defense couldn't find the Virginia Tech transfer when he entered the field in the second half of their ACC showdown.
Edmans scored two second-half goals to help the Hokies come back from 2-0 down at the half and tie the then-No. 1 Demon Deacons, 3-3, in front of 2,413 fans, the second-largest crowd in Tech Soccer Stadium.
He scored off Brent Hoopercross just 62 seconds into the second half to reduce Wake's lead to 2-1. After Sam Cronin scored to give the Demon Deacons the lead again at 3-1, Edmans scored on a header off a Patrick Nyarko cross to make it 3-2. Nyarko completed the Hokie comeback when he scored himself on a header.
Oct. 5 in Blacksburg
Virginia Tech 3 Wake Forest 3 (OT). Goals: Edmans (Hooper) 47, Edmans (Nyarko) 74, Nyarko (Reed) 86; Cronin (Adams) 27, Bone (Lahoud, Arnoux) 34, Cronin (Bone) 54.
Virginia Tech --Aigner, Baden, Zehender, Shupp, Hock, Reed, Campbell, Nyarko, Nason, Collier, Gilson. Sub: Hooper, Spangler, Edmans, Brutus, Dillie, Dunn.
Wake Forest --Edwards, Valentin, Phelan, Opara, Cronin, Bone, Brown, Adams, Tracy, Lahoud, Arnoux. Sub: Schilawski.
DUKE-BOSTON COLLEGE (2-4).The Eagles were up 2-0 after 33 minutes, saw their lead disappear, but recovered to win and improve their record in the ACC to 4-0-0.
Junior transfer Alejandro Bedoya scored twice, while Paul Gerstenberger (35-yard free kick) and Mike Konicoff (insurance goal) each scored once.
"This was a great win," BC coach Ed Kelly said. "We were up early and then they tied it. Then we came back for the win. I'm very pleased for the kids and I think we're playing better and better as the season progresses."
Oct. 5 in Durham, N.C.
Duke 2 Boston College 4.Goals: Grossman (Medcalf) 43, Medcalf (Grella) 51; Bedoya (Reddick) 7, Gerstenberger 33, Bedoya (Gerstenberger) 55, Konicoff (Manswell) 74.
Duke --Papadakis, Dugoni, Ibeagha, Barnes, Bienenfeld, Charowski, Videira, Wadsworth, Castaneda, Dudley, Grella. Sub: Ferner, Grossman, Pope, Medcalf, McDaniel.
Boston College -- Brown, Gerstenberger, Shefler, Reddick, Melas, Ayarna, Hepburn, Bedoya, Konicoff, Chin, Manswell. Subs: Gallington, Carey, O'Neil.
Referee: Ronnie Canalis.
MARYLAND-CLEMSON (3-2). The Terrapins and Tigers both went into the nationally televised game carrying sub-.500 records, but they certainly didn't play like it.
Clemson came back from a 1-0 deficit at the half to lead, 2-1, on goals by Greg Eckhardt and Tommy Drake, but Maryland rallied to tie the score on Drew Yates' goal in the 68th minute and win on freshman Rodney Wallace's first goal in the fourth minute of overtime to the delight of a crowd of 3,726 at Ludwig Field. Another freshman, Billy Cortes, added the first goal of the night.
"This was a great win in our fifth overtime game this season," Maryland coach Sasho Cirovski said. "We lost two very tough overtime games earlier in the season and this shows that we have gotten stronger. This was the beginning of the second half of the season and we needed a result. Clemson clawed back in and fought hard but we showed that we grew up. We got behind and scored great second and third goals and that is something we can build on for the rest of the season."
Oct. 5 in College Park, Md.
Maryland 3 Clemson 2 (OT). Goals: Cortes (King) 9, Yates (Costanzo, King) 68, Wallace (Zusi) 94; Eckhardt (Parrish) 49, Drake 64.
Clemson --Bendik, Newton, Eckhardt, Usry, Routh, Poe, Cava, Buchholz, Parrish, Ball, Brooks. Subs: Rogers, Moore, Drake, Thornton.
Maryland -- Holder, Flatley, Gonzalez, Delagarza, Wallace, Costanzo, King, Allen, Hall, Cortes, Zusi. Subs: Rodkey, Yates, Marchiano, Kadotani.
Referee: Abby Okulaja.