Whitman men boot No. 21 UPS in overtime
WALLA WALLA — Whitman College notched its most impressive victory of the Northwest Conference men’s soccer season Saturday with a 2-1 overtime win over previously undefeated University of Puget Sound.
Jed Jacobsen, Sr.
But the Missionaries had little time to rest on their laurels as Pacific Lutheran University, another of the NWC’s elite squads, invaded the Missionary campus for a Sunday showdown.
UPS, meanwhile, traveled to Spokane Sunday to take on league-leading Whitworth, the league’s lone remaining undefeated team. Whitworth tripped PLU 3-2 on Saturday to extend its record to 5-0-0 in league play and 8-0-1 overall.
Puget Sound and PLU were in a flat-footed tie for second place with 4-1-0 league records. The Loggers were 7-2-1 overall and the Lutes brought a 5-4-1 record into Sunday’s match in Walla Walla.
Whitman, meanwhile, found itself at 2-2-1 in league play, all alone in fourth place, and 4-5-2 overall.
“We have another opportunity to put another loss on another pretty good team,” Whitman coach Mike Washington said of Sunday’s test against Pacific Lutheran. “We knew coming into the weekend that both of these games were very important and that it was very important that we come out and play positive. We did that on Saturday.”
Senior Jed Jacobson of Mercer Island, Wash., scored Whitman’s game-winning goal unassisted five minutes into overtime Saturday. His shot from the top of the box found the upper left corner as it slipped past Loggers goalkeeper Chris McDonald, who had previously deflected seven Missionary shots.
Whitman had grabbed an early 1-0 lead on sophomore Logan Grime’s (Batesburg, N.C.) unassisted score at 35:03 of the first half. Puget Sound’s Carson Swope, with an assist from Andrew White, scored the equalizer at 75:12 of the second half.
Whitman outshot UPS 14-5 overall and Missionary goalie Michael Bathurst, a senior from Portland, Ore., was only required to make two saves. Whitman held a 7-3 advantage in shots on goal.
Jack Morgan, Jr.
“UPS is a difficult team to play in that they stretch you out and play over midfield rather than through midfield,” Washington said of the Loggers, who entered the game with a seven-game winning streak and were ranked No. 21 in the nation among NCAA Division III schools.
“They play back to front. All of their services come from defending players and they put you under a lot of pressure, which can effect the way you play.”
Washington once again praised the play of his back line and singled out the play of juniors Cooper Schumacher (Seattle), and Jack Morgan (Bellingham, Wash.) and, of course, Jacobson for his OT score.
“Cooper dealt with an incredible number of long balls and kept an incredible number of balls in the air,” the coach said. “Jack also played well because of the pressure they came with. And then to get the winning goal from another one of our defenders was great to see. We always try to involve all of our players.”
Washington said his team was able to control the ball a good deal of the time which did alleviate some of the pressure UPS was trying to create. Overtime, however, creates its own special kind of pressure.
“Mistakes become more important, and it’s important that you don’t make them,” Washington said of playing in overtime. “But there’s also the gamble aspect because you want to win, and you’ve got to get it done in 20 minutes after not being able to in 90 minutes.
“Oh, boy! Make a mistake and you lose.
“It’s a horrible way to lose but a phenomenal way to win.”