SEWARD, Neb. – It can be a cruel game sometimes. The Concordia University Men’s Soccer team put together an effort that was worthy of a result, but it wound up on the wrong side of a 2-1 decision on Wednesday (Sept. 8) evening. The Bulldogs fell at the hands of visiting Benedictine College (Kan.) despite conceding only three shots on goal. The Ravens made them count with a goal apiece in the 20th and 34th minutes.
Head Coach Jason Weides’ squad has started out September with a couple of losses and a tie after a 2-0 start. Now 2-2-1, Concordia has the capability of turning these recent results into wins going forward.
“I felt like did quite well in many facets of the game,” Weides said. “Normally if you have one save you have to make it a game, you would probably say you won the game. They didn’t have many shots, but they took advantage of it. I think in the first half, we played well in many areas, minus a little bit of toughness – getting into a tackle, winning a challenge, winning a second ball or a header. We challenged them going into the second half and they stepped up to the challenge.”
This one got feisty in the second half on an evening when eight cards were issued. Benedictine played down a man for nearly the final 30 minutes. That circumstance put the Ravens on their back foot. In the 74th minute, Jarrod Henson found the back of the net for his first collegiate goal. The match picked up from intensity the rest of the way with Benedictine managing to hold onto its one-goal advantage.
Concordia peppered Ravens keeper Carlos Flores with eight shots on goal, including two from Yessine Bessaies. The lone save registered by Bulldog keeper Federico Simonetti occurred in the 88th minute and provided some late hope. One final desperation shot was fired off by Caleb Goldsmith, who launched ball high over the goal.
Concordia dropped a 2-0 decision at Benedictine back in the spring. The Ravens (2-2) have bounced back from an 0-2 start to this season by claiming wins over Bethel College (Kan.) and the Bulldogs. They got a goal apiece on Wednesday from Daniel Wee and JJ Johannsen. Concordia owned a 10-6 advantage in the overall shot count.
Weides and company feel like they have missed some opportunities over the last couple outings. Fortunately, there is time to turn things around.
“We’re trying to get healthier. We are a bit banged up,” Weides said. “Every team deals with it to a certain extent, but we have a little bit more of our fair share (of injuries) right now. Step one is to get some guys back and then keep increasing that competition level each and every day at practice. We know we’re in for a good test come Wednesday against Bellevue.”
That matchup with the eighth-ranked Bruins (4-1-1) will take place next Wednesday (Sept. 15) with kickoff at 7:30 p.m. CT from Bellevue. The in-state rival Bruins defeated the Bulldogs last season, 3-1, in Seward.