Men’s Soccer Drops Two This Weekend

The UCA men’s soccer team had a tough first couple of games this weekend, dropping both against Delaware University and Maryland-Baltimore County University.

The Central Arkansas men’s soccer team opened the 2015 season on Aug. 28, heading to Newark, Delaware, to take on the Blue Hens of the University of Delaware. Delaware got a goal early in the second half, and that would prove to be all they would need, leaving the Bears with a 1-0 deficit.

After being out-shot 9-3 in the first half, UCA seemed to settle into the second half, limiting the Blue Hens to just three shots after the break. The first of those shots would be all the Blue Hens would need though, as junior forward Guillermo Delgado scored off a cross from senior midfielder Ben Sampson and beat Central Arkansas keeper sophomore Harrison Veith for the match’s only goal.

Central Arkansas continued to battle as freshman midfielder Daltyn Knutson’s shot was blocked by the Delaware defense in the 61st minute and another attempt went wide in the 83rd minute. Sophomore midfielder Pepe San Roman saw a shot go high in the 89th minute. Freshman midfielder and forward Chris Holmes had the Bears’ lone shot on goal for the match, when his 15th minute attempt was saved by redshirt freshman Todd Morton. Knutson added three shots, while San Roman added one. Veith made four saves in goal for the Bears to keep the score at 1-0.

Freshman defender Niklas Sandquist felt as though the Bears came off their flight to Delaware on Thursday ready to go.

“We felt that we were well prepared and we had good confidence to beat a high-ranked team as Delaware,” he said.

He said that though the Bears had a tough game, there were some silver linings for the team to take for the rest of the season.

“We were well organized in our defense and we had some good counter attacks. Also that we had the mentality to try and score a goal when we were one goal down,” Sandquist said. “Something we need to improve is that we need to be more accurate in our scoring opportunities and take care of those chances we get against a good side as Delaware.”

Saturday was a less hopeful game, traveling to Baltimore, Maryland, to square off against the 12th-ranked University of Maryland-Baltimore County Retrievers. Despite putting up double-digit shot attempts against the 2014 final four squad, the Bears were unable to put themselves on the board, falling 5-0.

UMBC opened the scoring in the 17th minute, when senior midfielder and forward Michael Scott collected a cross from sophomore forward Cormac Noel and headed it into the bottom-right corner of the net. The Retrievers added a goal in 33rd minute, when sophomore midfielder Gregg Hauck and freshman midfielder James Gielen put together a couple of passes to get to senior forward Darius Madison, who beat Central Arkansas keeper Veith.

In the second half, UMBC added a pair of back-to-back goals in the 72nd and 73rd minute, when Noel and Hauck picked up scores of their own. Junior midfielder Christian Morales capped the match’s scoring in the 85th minute, getting a free kick from 22 yards out to make it 5-0 UMBC.

The Bears put up 10 shots against UMBC on the night, including shots on goal from Knutson and sophomore midfielder William Woody. Freshman forward Jacob Jerles also gave the Bears a solid chance in the second half, but his attempt rattled of the crossbar.

Central Arkansas returns to action Friday night, opening the home part of its schedule against cross-town opponent Central Baptist at the Bill Stephens Soccer Complex. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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