Waverly, Iowa – With a 1-0 victory over Wartburg College under the lights on Wednesday night, the Gustavus men’s soccer team picked up another important regional victory and improved to 5-1-1 on the year. After Zach Brown (So., Eau Claire, Wis.) scored the eventual game-winner just over five minutes into the match, the Gustie defense tightened down to preserve the one-goal victory. Wartburg drops to 2-3-1 on the season with the loss.
Since a narrow 1-0 defeat at the hands of UC-Santa Cruz to start the season, the Gusties have made it a habit of coming through in close matches. Tonight’s 1-0 win over the Knights is Gustavus’ fourth one-goal victory.
“Really enjoyable game tonight. At times you would have thought it was Arsenal playing rather than us,” said Head Coach Mike Middleton. “The lads looked very comfortable on possession and the movement was excellent. I must admit, it was fun to watch us play tonight.”
It took just 5:16 for the opening goal of the match to be scored. Sophomore David Lilly (Maple Grove, Minn.) found Zach Brown for the game-winner, his third of the season. Brown now has eight points on three goals and two assists this season, while Lilly has a team-high four assists with one goal for seven points.
“We scored a lovely goal and created a hatful of chances against a very good team in Wartburg. I’m proud of the way we came out and played after the long trip.” said Middleton.
Wartburg finished the match with the advantage in shots at 13-9. The Knights outshot the Gusties 9-3 in the first half, while Gustavus carried a 6-4 edge in the second.
Gustavus goalkeeper Brett Ylonen (So., Lake Elmo, Minn.) turned away a total of four shots on the evening – three of which came in the second half. He picks up his third shutout victory of the season and is now 4-1-1 overall.
Coach Middleton is pleased with his club’s perseverance through a grueling road schedule to start the year and is excited to be back at home for the first time since Sept. 5 this weekend. “We are really looking forward to playing at home again after what seems like an eternity on the road. We will look to keep the momentum going as we head back into league play against Saint John’s on Saturday,” he concluded.
Gustavus will kick off a four-match homestand on Saturday, Sept. 22 with an MIAC match against Saint John’s University at 1:00 p.m. on the Gustie Soccer Field. The Johnnies roll into St. Peter with an overall record of 3-2-2 and an MIAC mark of 1-0.