WINONA LAKE – A back-and-forth match between No. 22 Roosevelt and Grace’s men’s soccer team ended in a 1-1 double overtime draw on Monday.
Despite having a myriad of chances, the Lancers didn’t score until the last minute of regulation. The match was evenly played throughout, producing 17 shots for Grace and 13 for Roosevelt.
The Lancers (3-0-2) were coming off a double overtime game on Saturday against Bluefield, but fatigue did not seem to be a factor during Monday’s clash.
“We knew tonight was going to be a tough game, and we needed that challenge. I thought our guys rose to the occasion,” said Grace head coach Matt Hotchkin. “Roosevelt is a strong team. Their possession and movement off the ball are second to none. Having said that, I thought our guys played smart tonight. We didn’t give them very many good looks.”
The first half produced good chances for both squads. Roosevelt started strongly and pressured Grace’s defense in the early stages. The Lakers (3-0-1) glanced a shot off the crossbar in their best look.
But Grace gained composure soon after and began to create several opportunities. Colin Cape had a header in the 11th minute to the near post that forced a reflex save by the Lakers’ goalkeeper.
In the second half, Roosevelt netted first. The Lakers took advantage of a defensive miscue by Grace and finished the quick-hitting counterattack just 99 seconds after halftime. Roosevelt’s goal proved to be one of its two shots in the second half.
The Lancers pressed hard for an equalizer. Minutes later, Thomas Tydeman and Damon Binkley combined on a charge at Roosevelt’s goal, but Binkley’s shot from close range was saved.
With just five minutes left on the clock, Cody Boerema made an inch-perfect pass to Binkley who split two defenders and found himself alone in a 1v1 with the Lakers’ goalkeeper. His shot beat the goalie but rolled just wide of the far post.
Grace continued to pound the ball inside the Lakers’ penalty box but were repeatedly denied until the last minute. The Lancers earned a corner kick, and Boerema’s cross was flicked into the net from a tight angle by Cape with just 33 seconds left in regulation.
Overall for the second half, Grace outshot Roosevelt 10-2.
In the overtime periods, Roosevelt seemed to have the sharper legs in the first session. The Lakers took three shots compared to zero for the Lancers.
The second overtime session produced two more shots for the Lakers and one for the Lancers, but neither side was able to find a dramatic winner.
For the match, Grace had 17 shots and 11 corner kicks while Roosevelt tallied 13 shots and two corners.
Robbie Barnhill made six saves in 110 minutes in goal. He was defended well by the back line of Jon Sands, Jon Christensen, Brayton Taylor and Josiah Osborn.
Cape and Tydeman led Grace with four shots and two on goal, and Binkley and Hector Torres tallied three shots apiece.
“It was frustrating to give Roosevelt a goal in the first half, but I thought we outworked them for the majority of the second half. We had many good opportunities to tie it up, and we kept missing those chances,” Hotchkin said. “The late goal was earned. I love seeing these guys play when they have full hearts believing. This is a step forward in the young season. We strived together and scrapped and tried to win. Even though the scoreboard doesn’t reflect a win, we are beginning to see what we are capable of.”