Men’s Soccer Suffers First Defeat In 4-2 Loss To St. Olaf

Posted on September 19th, 2015 by

Patrick Roth scored one of Gustavus' two goals in Saturday's 4-2 loss to St. Olaf.

ST. PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus men’s soccer team suffered its first defeat of the 2015 season on Saturday afternoon, falling to St. Olaf College 4-2 at the Gustie Soccer Field. The loss moves the Gusties to 5-1-0 overall and 0-1-0 in the MIAC, while St. Olaf moves to 3-4-0 overall and 2-0-0 in the MIAC.

“The result did not go our way today, but I thought it was a really good game,” said Coach Mike Middleton. “St. Olaf played very well, and took their chances. On the other hand, we had many good possessions, creating a number of good opportunities without putting the game away. Often the final delivery was not quite there, but it’s early in the year.”

St. Olaf made the most of an early opportunity, as senior forward Aaron Stets put the Oles on the board with an unassisted goal less than one minute into the game. Then, nearly 20 minutes later, the Oles’ Tylor Rosera found the goal after a scrum in front of the net following a corner kick from Brenden Johnson. St. Olaf made it 3-0 on a similar play at 34:32, as Johnson booted another corner kick, with Kevin Skrip putting it through for his third goal of the season.

The Gusties wouldn’t go quietly, however, and the Patrick Roth (Jr., Stillwater, Minn.)/Eli Bjerk (Sr., Stillwater, Minn.) combination that combined for two goals and two assists in Gustavus’ past game against Greenville, teamed again to bring the Gusties within two at 37:56, making it a 3-1 Ole lead going into halftime.

“A few mistakes early on saw us concede a couple of early goals, but the lads to their infinite credit played their way back into the game,” said Middleton. “I was happy with getting into the game at halftime and thought we had it there for us to take. But, even though we dominated possession, too often the moves broke down without a good final ball. I thought we were good though after the initial period.”

In the second half, the Gusties continued to build on the momentum they had gained near the end of the first, and six minutes in, got their second goal of the game on an impressive left-footed kick from first-year Arthur Parens (Wayzata, Minn.) at 51:34. From that point, the Gusties continued to control much of the possession, but sloppy play in the final 15 minutes led to two Gustavus yellow cards that resulted in penalty kicks for the Oles. First-year goalkeeper Anders Severson (Lino Lakes, Minn.) managed to keep the first out, but couldn’t save the second, and Skrip scored his second goal of the game at the 80 minute mark to secure a 4-2 win for the Oles.

“We have some things to work on, but I think we can take a lot of out of this game,” said Middleton. “This is a team really good in possession, and we need to tighten some things up, but overall I was really happy with our lads. Its a long-old season, and in life, not everything goes your way.
A nice day off tomorrow – feels like the first in ages for most of us – and then noses to the grindstone again on Monday,” concluded Middleton. “I’m looking forward to that and another good game next week against St. Thomas on Saturday – that is something our whole team is looking forward to.”
The Gusties will compete next on Saturday, Sept. 26 in a 1 p.m. game against St. Thomas at the Gustie Soccer Field.

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