WINONA LAKE – Two overtime periods and 90 minutes were not enough to separate Grace’s men’s soccer team and 18th-ranked Indiana Wesleyan on Wednesday in a 0-0 draw.
The match, featured nationally as the Tourbeau National Men’s Soccer Game of the Week, was even in nearly every statistical category between the two Crossroads League rivals.
The Lancers (5-2-1; 1-0-1 CL) had the stronger looks at goal in the first half. Josh Goepper made an outstanding save for the Wildcats (7-2-1; 2-0-1 CL) in the first five minutes of play to thwart Steven Fiema’s effort.
A loose ball in the penalty box fell to Devin Kemmerer midway into the first half, and Kemmerer’s low blast at IWU’s goal was saved by Goepper.
The balanced match continued in the second half as Grace held a slight 5-4 advantage in shots. Neither team managed to find the winning strike, despite strong looks from Grace’s Fiema and Kyle Hamlin as well as a long blast from the Wildcats’ Geoff Bowman.
The Wildcats looked fresher in the first overtime period, outshooting the Lancers 3-1. Indiana Wesleyan forced Grace’s Jacob Cole into a huge save off a corner kick in the first overtime.
Both sides had solid attempts in the final 10-minute overtime period as the Wildcats seemed to save their best for last. With three seconds remaining on the clock, IWU’s Tyrone Martin unleashed a shot from outside the box that clanged off the post for a near game winner.
Indiana Wesleyan held a narrow 13-12 advantage in shots for the match, while Grace had a few more corner kicks (4-2). The Lancers forced Goepper into making nine saves for his shutout performance. Cole stepped up to make five saves in a shutout of the Wildcats.
Fiema led all players with six shots and four shots on goal for the Lancers. Bowman paced the Wildcats on offense with three shots, and Tad Glibert added two shots on frame.
The tie keeps both Grace and Indiana Wesleyan unbeaten in Crossroads League action. The Lancers will next take on Goshen on the road on Saturday, and the Wildcats will host Huntington on Saturday.