Men’s Soccer’s Now Number One Seed
The College of St. Scholastica men’s soccer team had a very exciting weekend, defeating Bethany Lutheran College on Saturday afternoon and then putting up a fight against the previously eighth best team in the nation, St. Thomas.
The Saints traveled down to Mankato expecting a win. This season, Bethany Lutheran College has an overall record of (0-16-0), not winning one game this season while the Saints have an undefeated UMAC record. The Saints recorded the first goal of the game in the late eighth minute by freshman Jordan Lennon. The game continued steadily. The Saints continued to put many shots on goal, but Bethany’s keeper and defense held strong. Both St. Scholastica and Bethany Lutheran received a yellow card in the first half. The Vikings got the first one in the seventeenth minute. In the forty-first minute, senior Kyle Farrar received a yellow card for the Saints. With only four seconds left in the half, the Vikings got one past the Saints goalkeeper, Corrado Rosato, ending the half in a tie. Though the first half ended in a tie, the Saints overshadowed the Vikings when it came to shots (21-5) and corner kicks (9-1).
The Saints did not let the game stay tied for long. During the fiftieth minute, sophomore Luke Buckton took back the Saint’s lead with his eighth goal of the year coming off an assist from senior Josh Robak. The score stayed at 2-1 for the next forty minutes as the Saints struggled to get one of their many shots past the Viking’s goalkeeper. During the scoring hiatus, senior Ryan Flynn picked up another yellow card for the Saints. With only three minutes left in the game, Buckton scored another goal assisted by Farrar. Buckton’s ninth goal of the season was the last of the game, ending it with a score of 3-1.
The win on Saturday added another win to the Saint’s undefeated UMAC record. Buckton had a particularly good game.
“Saturday’s game was another great step in heading towards our goal of winning the UMAC title,” Buckton said. “It was 3 points that we really needed to set us up to hopefully win it this coming weekend.”
The game on Sunday proved to be a lot more challenging for the Saints. Facing off against St. Thomas, who is now ranked sixth nationally in the Division III league, did not end with a similar result to Saturday’s game. The Tommies started the scoring five minutes into the game. The Saints played aggressively as sophomore Trygve Rennan received a yellow card in the fifteenth minute. The Tommies scored again in the thirty-fifth minute off of a free kick. This was the last goal of the half, ending with a score 2-0.
The second half told a similar story to the first. The Tommies scored their third and final goal in the fifty-seventh minute, ending the game with a 3-0 loss for the Saints. The Tommies outshot the saints 19-7, where 9-1 were considered shots on goal.
Though the Saint’s left their field with a loss on the scoreboard, they gained a lot of knowledge. According to head coach Barry Chastey, this game is what they needed.
“This was a game that highlighted our need to improve” coach Chastey said. “[The Tommies] were a good, nationally-ranked team, but if we want to compete at the national level we have to raise our game and it starts in training.”
Sophomore Darby Henderson also took away a very important lesson from the game against St. Thomas.
“What I took away from the game is that you have to be consistent with your discipline if you want to succeed,” Henderson said. “You can’t only have streaks of playing well throughout the game.”
Next week, the Saints will travel to Martin Luther College on Saturday, October 22nd, which is the last game of the UMAC games for the season. Buckton speaks for the team, explaining their mindset going into this last UMAC game.
“Our mindset going into this game is going to be the same as always, play as if it was a final. No matter the team we all need to give 100 [percent]” Buckton said. “Each practice and game we are improving, if we continue on this path we are going to be in great shape for the tournament.”