Men’s Soccer Outlasts Wartburg 2-1 in Overtime

Posted on September 9th, 2018 by


WAVERLY, Iowa – After suffering a shutout loss Friday night, the Gustavus men’s soccer team rebounded Sunday night with a 2-1 overtime victory at Wartburg. Matt Gibbons (So., Minneapolis, Minn.) scored the game-winning goal in the fifth minute of the extra period on a free kick to move the Gusties to 3-1 overall.

“We are really proud of the guys for digging out the result in really challenging conditions,” Head Coach Tudor Flintham said. “They could have made excuses but they just didn’t let that stuff distract them. We talk about being “above the line” in our reactions and they were well above the line today. Can we play better? Definitely, but they dug deep and showed some grit that will serve us well moving forward.”

Wartburg tallied its lone score of the game at the 19:02 mark off a corner kick-to-header goal. Gustavus answered with 3:46 remaining in the first half as Nicholas Leach (Fy., Sioux Falls, S.D.) found the right corner of the net for his first career goal on an assist from Nolan Garvin (So., Batavia, Ill.) and the score read 1-1 at halftime. The Gusties scored on their only shot in the first 45 minutes as the Knights had six shots.

After a scoreless second period, which saw the home team lead in shots again, 7-5, Gibbons connected for his first goal of the season after the Wartburg foul 4:41 into overtime.

The Wartburg foul was a result of Jake Conroy (Sr., Maple Grove, Minn.) driving into the midfield and wriggling all the way through to the top of the box. A Wartburg defender blocked Conroy’s pass with his hand, then Gibbons hit it directly.

The Knights outshot the Gusties 14-7 and had five more corner kick opportunities. Anders Severson (Sr., Woodbury, Minn.) saw his first action in goal and made six saves in 94:41 of playing time.

“I felt we again started really well and our possession for the first 15-20 minutes was close to 75 percent,” Flintham said. “We were dominating. But we got a bit casual and they punished some loose passing exactly how Wartburg does. They’re hard to play against in that low defensive block with 11 players behind the ball, and then do well to capitalize on direct play and dead balls. That killed the rhythm of the game and for large parts it really didn’t feel like a soccer game. But the lads kept trying to play and again we are really proud of them for gutting it out in a moment when tired legs and minds start to wane.

“Getting back into the game and wiping out the goal they scored from our error was huge, and exciting to see such a beautiful assist from Nolan and first college goal for Nick Leach. We could have won it in regulation when Trace Dobson picked out Nolan for a free header at the back stick, but in a strange way it was almost more satisfying to gut it out in OT and told us more about the personality of this team.”

Gustavus returns to its home pitch Wednesday for the MIAC opener against Carleton. Kickoff is 4 p.m. at the Gustie Soccer Field.


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