Sunday, October 24, 2010
Difficult matches spurs men's soccer to stay on top
Usually winning nine games straight for any team in any sport is a pretty big deal. But for the Roger State men’s soccer team, they’re concentration is focused on taking one game at a time and as a result, winning streaks tend to follow.
The Hillcats tremendous defense is to credit during their two week road trip. RSU accumulated a total of 15 offensive points while only being scored on twice in five games.
RSU men defeated Avila University 2-0 and Ottawa University 5-2 earning their sixth straight win of the season. Junior Griffin Kane played big in both matches to give the Hillcats early leads.
Rogers State kept their winning streak alive in their Sooner Athletic Conference opener easing past Southern Nazarene 1-0. Senior Sergio Guerra scored the lone goal in the 23rd minute of the SNU match.
Later in the week, the Hillcats cruised past Wayland University 6-1 giving RSU their 8th straight win of the season.
Once again the Rogers State men’s team pulled away with a victorious win on the road and it wasn‘t easy. The Hillcats claimed their ninth game streak with a 1-0 win over No. 26 nationally ranked Oklahoma City University.
“To play a team of that caliber after being on the road, tired, playing with out a starter or two, it was really big for them,” said Derek Larkin, Head soccer coach.
“We had some late night trips coming back off the road. We went to Kansas city twice in the same week. We’ve been to west Texas, Oklahoma city, a couple of times, so it took its toll on them and that’s what made the Oklahoma city game that much sweeter.”
Going into their conference home opener, the Hillcats may have met their match. The men’s team were handed their first loss of conference play against Oklahoma Baptist University. The Bison snapped the Hillcats winning streak with a 4-1 victory.
RSU was able to take avenge of their loss with a 6-0 domination over St. Gregory University. Junior Henrique Sousa and senior Des Fitzgerald scored a combined five goals while senior Carlos Zuta added the final goal, propelling the Hillcats to victory. Fitzgerald leads the team with six goals of the season.
In the same week, RSU suffered a disappointing defeat against John Brown University. The Hillcats were unable to overcome a two-goal halftime deficit. They had several chances to get back in the game in the second half but were unable to capitalize eventually falling to JBU 3-0.
“We gave up a couple shots and they scored when they had their opportunities and we didn’t score when we had our opportunities,” said sophomore Justin Friesen.
Five games remain before the start of the SAC conference tournament. Currently RSU men are ranked No. 2 in the conference. The Hillcats look to continue staying on top to gain home field advantage.
Update: RSU men fell 2-1 in double overtime to USAO. For more results go to rsuhillcats.com
Go to the soonerathletic.org website for current conference standings.
In photo: Senior goalkeeper Sean Surridge
Photo by gssphotography.com