Menís Soccer Shut Out by Allegheny
After a hard earned 1-1 tie against Wittenberg this past Saturday, the Oberlin College men’s soccer team suffered a 0-4 loss to Allegheny College at Allegheny on Tuesday.
Allegheny, ranked 21 in the country, offered OC its first look at a solid opponent. The Oberlin squad, off-put by Allegheny’s physical style of play, did not start well. Allegheny’s physicality, which earned 27 fouls and no yellows, disrupted the OC’s signature finesse in offense and dismantled a usually staunch defense. The Yeomen’s poor start resulted in an early Allegheny goal in the sixth minute.
In an attempt to recover, Oberlin played with urgency, abandoning their usual style of methodical midfield passing for a long ball game. Allegheny’s constant pressure forced the OC defense to make long passes to their offensive players up field in hopes of to create counter-attack opportunities.
Oberlin’s abrupt shift in style led to defensive errors, which the Allegheny offense took full advantage of with swift counter attacks. This resulted in three more goals, one near the end of the first half and two after halftime.
First-year striker Skyler Dum did not have much to say, except that it was an off day for the Yeomen: “It wasn’t our day. Nothing bounced our way.”
Head Coach Blake New said, “The score is not indicative of our level of competition. Allegheny is not four goals better than us.”
New said that the game taught his players to be more physical and intense when confronted by an aggressive opponent: “It’s like a bully. He’ll walk all over you if you let him, but if you fight back, he’ll stand down. If the referee won’t control the game, you have to play accordingly. If we’d answered their [Allegheny’s] physical play, we would have done better.”
New commented on junior defender Ross Myers’s excellent play on Tuesday. “He was the only guy that was physical right back,” said New.
Oberlin fared better against Wittenberg. While thunderstorm delays ended the game prematurely, the OC outplayed their opponents during the first and final thirds of the game. The Yeomen took the advantage early with an unassisted goal from senior co-captain Zach Tesler, who picked off a ball at midfield and beat his defender for the score. Oberlin was plagued by a series of near misses thereafter. A missed penalty kick late in second half was followed by junior midfielder Sam Zackheim’s shot off the cross bar. Unable to hold their 1-0 lead, Wittenberg scored with 16 minutes left. With three minutes left in regulation, the referees delayed the game due to thunder and lightening. Shortly after, they called the game out of concern for the players, leaving the score at 1-1.
Although the win slipped through Oberlin’s grasp, New was upbeat about the result: “A point on the road against a good conference team is not a bad thing.”
Solid defense from central defenders Meyers and senior tri-captain Montgomery Lobe was coupled with good offensive play from Tesler and Zackheim.
The Yeomen will host Earlham College this Saturday at 2:30 p.m.