by Marcus Koontz
Despite running into double overtime at home against Willamette University, the Whitman men’s soccer team still came up scoreless Saturday and ended the final 10 minute overtime period tied.
“[The team] just couldn’t put the ball in the net,” said #30 Brett Axelrod, goalkeeper. All through the game the sun was shining, the wind was blowing and the fans were there in standard Whitman fashion. The first half started out slow, with the scoreboard showing only two shots on goal at the end of the half, both by Whitman.
The second half heated up, with Whitman taking three more shots on goal, all misses, and at the end of the second half Willamette took a shot on goal that was blocked by the goalkeeper. In overtime both teams continued to be frustrated by a lack of goals, and the game ended scoreless. Saturday’s tie puts Whitman at one win and one tie for the season record, and one tie in conference play.
When asked how the season is starting out, Coach Washington said, “We have had an extended pre-season with the trip to England, so we hope these games will help our preparation.”
While the extended pre-season may prove advantageous in the team’s upcoming games, there are other reasons to anticipate a good season this year. “We are excited as to the depth and quality of our team,” said Coach Washington. When asked who was at the top of their game this year Coach Washington said, “Too early to say …. Stephen Phillips and Andy Huntington look good up front. Cole Sherman and Jon Rue, also; both keepers look good.” When asked about injuries, Washington said that his major concern was Kevin Sigley, who is nursing a groin injury.
Whitman lost Sunday, Sept. 10, 1-0 against North Idaho College, but the loss doesn’t count towards Whitman’s NCAA record because NIC is a two-year college. Whitman’s Junior Varsity Team scored a 3-1 win against Saint Martin Tuesday, Sept. 12. The last game Whitman played before press time was Saturday’s tie against Willamette.