Trine Hands Men’s Soccer First Conference Defeat Of Season
Saturday, November 08, 2008
By Bruce Van Baren
Trine scored in the first minute and the final minute of Saturday’s MIAA regular season finale at Zuidema Field. Trine’s 2-1 overtime win snapped Calvin’s 13-game undefeated streak and 26-game league undefeated streak.
The Knights already clinched their second straight MIAA championship and the NCAA automatic qualifier. Seeding for the NCAA tournament will be determined on Monday.
“If anything this is a wakeup call that when we get opportunities (we have to) put them away,” coach Chris Hughes said. “This might be the slap that we need to make sure that we’re ready to go for tournament time.”
A driving rain for much of the day made for sloppy field conditions.
“We had to adjust,” Hughes said. “It was a wet and rainy day out. But both teams had to adjust. It played to the favor of Trine. We had heaven knows how many opportunities in front of the net and you have to put it away. That’s what it is. They got their (two) opportunities in front of the net and they put it away.”
Rudy Cantrell rocketed a volley past Calvin goal keeper Darrin Cline just 47 seconds into the game. A long pass from the midfield forced a Calvin defender to head the ball out of the penalty box. The header set Cantrell up just outside the 18-yard line, giving the Thunder a 1-0 lead.
“It didn’t (phase us),” Hughes said. “We knew we had 89 minutes to find the back of the net. We’re strong enough to get that done.”
Luke Holtrop tied the game in the 60th minute. Holtrop headed in a perfectly placed cross from Alex McKenzie for his third goal of the year. Calvin held a 20-6 shot advantage in the game, including a 14-4 advantage in the second half.
Calvin had two shots hit the cross bar and one shot hit the left post. Kyle Billin’s header in the sixteenth minute appeared to go in, but was cleared from the goal mouth by the Trine defense in the 29th minute.
Brad Heethuis narrowly missed on a similar play in the 78th minute with his header clipping the cross bar after Trine goal keeper Cory Sarason put a hand on the shot. Sarason had six saves and allowed the only goal for the Thunder in the second half. Ricky Witte had one save in the first.
The Knights poured on shots as the clock ticked under two minutes remaining in regulation. Justine Ahearne hit the left post after Sarason deflected his first shot back at him. Heethuis narrowly missed a game winner as the final seconds ticked off the clock.
“We hit everything today but the back of the net,” Hughes said. “The (Trine) goalie was just standing in the right spot a couple of times. We had a couple point blank shots and he was sitting there to make the save. You have to give him credit for stepping up.”
Calvin narrowly defeated Trine in Angola, Indiana earlier this year. Darrin Cline saved a penalty kick to preserve the 1-0 win.
“They played better the first game,” Hughes said. “They’ve got some young kids that can play the game. They found away to put the ball in the back of the net. Hat’s off to them. It’s a good way to finish their year.”
Trine broke the .500 barrier with the win and finishes 7-6-1 in the final MIAA standings in either fourth or fifth place depending on Saturday’s late results. Calvin finishes with a 12-1-1 record in the MIAA for the second straight year.
NOTES: Calvin finishes with the MIAA’s top-ranked defense that allowed only ten goals in league play… Calvin’s offense finishes second to Hope with 29 goals in league play… Hope’s game against at Alma is postponed… the Dutchmen will seek an NCAA at large bid to get into the tournament… Alex McKenzie’s assist to Luke Holtrop was his second of the year… Scott Hooker finishes with 18 points in MIAA league play, currently ranked first… Hooker finishes with five goals in league play, currently in a three-way tie for first place with Hope’s Jack Abe and Olivet’s Graham Lockwood…Hooker finishes with eight assists in league play, currently ranked first… Darrin Cline leads the league in minutes and save percentage with an .854 mark