Men’s Soccer Secures MIAC Playoff Berth With 2-0 Shutout Over Concordia

Posted on October 25th, 2016 by

Daniel Barnes dribbles the ball through Concordia defenders.

BOX SCORE

ST. PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus men’s soccer team secured a spot in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Playoffs Tuesday with a 2-0 victory over Concordia College. The Gusties improved to 6-8-1 overall and 5-3-1 in the MIAC, reaching 16 points in the league standings to secure a playoff berth – their 11th appearance in the 14-year history of the MIAC Playoffs.

“Good professional performance today from the lads,” Head Coach Mike Middleton said. “We dominated the game for stretches and put them under a lot of pressure for most of the game.”

Patrick Roth (Sr., Stillwater, Minn.) got the Gusties on the board early, scoring his fourth goal of the year off a corner kick 5:35 into the game. Fifteen minutes later, Matt Murakami (Jr., Eden Prairie, Minn.) gave the Black and Gold a 2-0 advantage with his sixth goal of the season, assisted by Matt Ouren (So., North Mankato, Minn.). Gustavus had three more shots in the first half, but was unable to increase its lead.

John Anderson clears the ball.

John Anderson clears the ball.

“We moved the ball very well in the first half in particular, crafting some nice chances from some pretty intricate play; I was very pleased with that,” Middleton said. “We need to keep up the standard and show the type of personality, panache and style we showed in the action moments today and in future games also.”

The Gusties outshot the Cobbers 8-4 in the first half and 8-7 in the second for a 16-11 total advantage. Murakami took a penalty kick 1:36 into the second half but the Concordia goalkeeper made a pair of impressive saves.

“It would have been nice to convert the penalty early in the second half,” Middleton said. “That would have killed off any thoughts of them getting back into the game, but it was not to be.

“We played a pretty young team for most of the second half. To their infinite credit they carved out some nice chances for themselves, and kept it tight at the back also. It’s nice to keep a clean sheet; the ‘keeper Matt Bateman (So., Savage, Minn.) will be chuffed with that!”

Bateman improved to 5-3-0 after making four saves, recording his fourth shutout this season.

“It looks like we are in the playoffs, which is really nice given a game to go,” Middleton said. “Credit to the lads who have now won five of the last six. Let’s see what we can achieve from here!”

Gustavus wraps up the regular season Saturday at Hamline (9-5-2, 3-4-2 MIAC), which will determine its seeding for the MIAC Playoffs.

 

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