Men’s Soccer Picks Up 2-0 Win Over Rival Hope at Zuidema Field
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
By Sports Information Student Assistant Andrew Knot
Calvin took a convincing, well-earned 2-0 victory from archrival Hope on Wednesday afternoon.
The Knights and Dutch, each 1-0 in conference prior to the game, opened the game aggressively and didn’t fail to generate excitement and scoring opportunities. In the game’s early stages, senior Brad Heethuis got free on the left wing but put a left-footed shot low and just wide of the far post. Soon thereafter, freshman Dino Duratovic got behind the Dutch backline and put another left-footed shot on net, but Hope’s keeper Logan Neil smothered it and kept the Knights off the board.
In the 13th minute, the Hope attack made use of a Grant Neil throw-in to threaten in front of the net. Neil’s throw got through to the far post, and the Dutch attack put two shots off the post before the Knights were able to clear the ball from danger.
Later, in the first half’s closing stages, sophomore Zach Willis took one of his multiple blazing runs down the left wing and found classmate Mike Sanderson entering the box. Sanderson one-timed the ball towards the near post with his left instep, but Neil made another stellar save, deflecting the ball off frame with his trailing foot. The game entered halftime scoreless.
Calvin got on the board early in the second half, when Duratovic carried a ball into the box. Duratovic’s shot was blocked, but junior Chris Nance charged into the box and blasted a strike off the crossbar and into the net to put the Knights on top in the 50th minute.
“The first goal is crucial,” said Coach Chris Hughes. “After that, we were just trying to wear them down.”
Hope would apply steady pressure from then on, but the Knights countered once more in the 70th minute. Freshman Alec Goorhouse’s savvy volley set up Willis in space. Willis cruised down the left flank, sending a cross past the lone Hope defender and to the foot of Sanderson. This time, Sanderson redirected the ball past an outstretched Neil to double the Knights’ lead.
Calvin was then able to stymie Hope’s attack. Junior Michael Dolan, who left the game late, consistently came up big for the Knights.
“Any time you can keep the other team off the board, you’re doing something right,” said Hughes.
The 2-0 lead held and Calvin advanced their record to 2-0 in the MIAA and 6-2-0 overall. Hope, who had swept the series last year, dropped to 1-1 in conference and 4-2-2 overall.
The Knights travel to Kalamazoo on Saturday.