Marquette Wire

Eagles break even in tourney

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After opening the season with a first-round victory over Denver during the Parents Weekend Invitational at Air Force in Colorado Springs, Colo., the men’s soccer team couldn’t handle the Falcons’ high-flying attack, losing the tournament finale, 7-0, Sunday.

Playing on a field still sopping wet from weekend rains, the Falcons scored on the Golden Eagles early and often. Midfielder Daniel Wasson struck first, scoring just 1:38 into the game. Forward Casey Chronister added two quick goals in the fifth and 14th minutes, and Wasson nailed home the second goal of his eventual hat trick with a penalty kick to give the Falcons a four-goal advantage before halftime.

“The field was underwater, and they ran at us relentlessly,” head coach Steve Adlard said. “They have a great offensive scheme and no one is going to stop them, especially here. They made us look bad today.”

Senior captain Derek Gutierrez said the poor field conditions didn’t decide the outcome.

“It’s no excuse because both teams are playing on the same field,” he said. “Air Force had a game plan to bring the house with seven or eight guys forward. Them scoring in the first two minutes or so just gave them momentum, and they kept bringing seven or eight guys forward and we had a hard time overcoming that and figuring out how to play against that.

“They really just outplayed us (Sunday) all over the field.”

Gutierrez said that while Marquette “fought to the very end,” it was tough to stay optimistic about the game’s outcome after junior midfielder Chris Lee drew a red card and ejection in the 51st minute.

“Playing a man down and you’re losing, 5-0, that’s definitely a stacked deck against you,” he said.

Air Force got off 18 shots, 12 of them on goal. The Golden Eagles managed just 11 shots, with both shots on goal glancing off the crossbar.

The Golden Eagles fared much better in Friday’s season opener, defeating Denver, 2-1.

With Marquette down, 1-0, in the 66th minute, sophomore forward Blair Kohlmeyer tied the game with the first — and most spectacular — of his two goals.

“His first goal was probably one of the best I’ve seen,” Gutierrez said. “From (40) yards out he turned and hit a bomb in the upper left-hand corner. There was nothing the goalkeeper was going to do about that.”

Kohlmeyer put Marquette ahead for good, scoring with the help of an assist from Gutierrez 10 minutes later. Kohlmeyer’s goals were the first of his collegiate career.

“It was a great team effort,” Gutierrez said of the team’s performance. “And Chris Lee and (freshman forward Matt) Blouin up top had a 15-minute spell where they just dominated the game.”

Though Adlard agreed with Gutierrez’s assessment of Lee and Blouin, he said the team wasn’t firing on all cylinders.

“It wasn’t our best effort,” he said. “A tie would have been fair in this situation. They were the better team until the last 20 minutes.”

With many of the team’s 14 freshman — more than half the roster — seeing their first college action this weekend, Gutierrez said the experience gained at the tournament can only help in the long run.

“The 7-0 loss is a 7-0 loss, but coming out of the weekend 1-1 is not a bad result,” he said. “We’re going to build it from here. It’s an education.”

The Golden Eagles will square off against University of Illinois at Chicago in the Flames’ season opener Wednesday.

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