Men’s soccer season comes to an end after first round

The men’s soccer team saw its 11th NCAA Tournament run come to an end last Thursday night.

The Warhawks fell on the road 2-1 to Washington University of St. Louis to finish their season 12-8, which ties a season-high for losses.

Boyd

The majority of the first half was played on the ’Hawks’ end of the pitch, where the Bears took seven of their 15 shots and 10 of their 12 corner kicks. Neither team would score before halftime leaving things tied at zero.

“We had a long bus ride the day before to play a game in hostile territory, so we just wanted to get our feet under us and we took the game 0-0 into the half,” senior Ryan Boyd said. “Both teams had scoring chances in the second half. Unfortunately, they got the better of the scoring chances.”

The Bears capitalized on one of those opportunities coming out of halftime. The game’s first goal came at 47:33 after they forced a turnover deep in ’Hawks territory, which was followed by a give and go from Patrick McLean to Jeremy Kirkwood for the score.

The ’Hawks response came at the 60th minute in the form of a one-timer from freshman Austin Saari to junior Logan Fye. Saari picked up his third assist and Fye his ninth goal of the season.

About eight minutes later, the Bears broke the tie in the 68th minute. Peter Jebson put the ball into the ’Hawks goal off of a corner kick, which turned out to be the game winner.

“They played the ball far post, headed it back across and someone put it in,” goalkeeper Matt Mikesell said. “I couldn’t see who, it was a mess. That’s what happens on corner kicks. There’s just a mess of people in front of the ball and anything can happen.”

The ’Hawks had scoring opportunities late in the half but could not find the back of the net and saw their post-season run come to a close.

“Overall we played a very good game, especially on defense,” head coach Greg Henschel said. “Washington came out ahead statistically in the first half but we were proud of the way we finished.”

After a slow start to the season, Henschel was proud of the way the team responded.

“As a program we don’t want to lose eight games in a season; that’s not something we’re accustomed to, but I think this was the first game we lost where we accurately represented ourselves as a team,” Henschel said. “We played a good match and the boys represented themselves and the university well.”

The loss Thursday was the end of the season for the team, but it was also the end of the careers for seniors Boyd and Kevin Kron and goalkeeper Aaron Sesselmann.

“It didn’t really hit me until after the game that I won’t be playing competitively anymore,” Boyd said. “We have nothing to hang our heads about because we played a good game and the team has plenty of young, hungry players returning next season.”