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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Bennett gets 200th coaching win against Dayton

Islami sets a career high in points
Matt Unger/MUTV
David Selvaggi scored his first of the season in the 68th minute. (Photo by Doug Peters/[email protected])

Those 90 minutes weren’t always pretty, but men’s soccer head coach Louis Bennett earned his 200th career victory Monday night in a back-and-forth game with the Dayton Flyers.

A penalty-kick goal from redshirt senior Kelmend Islami, followed by two goals in the second half from freshman Jesper Larsson and redshirt senior David Selvaggi was enough to propel Marquette to a 3-2 victory.

Bennett cared more about securing the victory than his career milestone.

“The fact that we’ve got two wins and one loss, that’s sweeter for me,” he said.

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The Golden Eagles appeared to be chasing quite a bit in the first half, largely due to sloppy unforced turnovers. Marquette didn’t record a shot until the 22nd minute.

“We’ve had to juggle things around because of injury,” Bennett said. “There had to be an adjustment. At times we looked like we had a very experienced organized team. At times we looked inexperienced.”

Bennett said the Golden Eagles tried rotating the players into the lineup due to the heat, but that simply halted the momentum.

Like the UW-Milwaukee match, Marquette’s offense began to click after the first 20 minutes. Islami was taken down in the box in the 37th minute, earning the team’s first penalty kick of the season. Islami’s efforts earned him the shot, and he buried it top right corner.

Dayton didn’t waste time in the second half, tying up the match in the first 15 minutes. Maik Schoonderwoerd was given plenty of time in the box, and was able to spin off redshirt junior defenseman John Pothast to slide the ball into the net.

Larsson’s goal in the 67th minute put Marquette back ahead and was clearly the most dazzling goal of the day. He headed in a perfect ball from junior Louis Bennett II to notch his first goal at Marquette.

“It was a long time since I scored a goal,” Larsson said. “It’s a great feeling. It was a great goal. We’ve been practicing (that) in our training sessions.”

Larsson’s tally caps off a strong week for the young Swede. He created numerous scoring chances in the Milwaukee Cup, and he believes he’s making a good impression on the coaching staff. Bennett says they are now witnessing what they expected to see.

“I joked with him that he sent his body over about a month ago, and his heart and brain hadn’t come yet,” Bennett said. “It came over the past two weeks. He’s really started to put everything together. We’re beginning to see the player we saw in January and I saw when we were recruiting him in Sweden.”

Selvaggi scored the eventual winner a minute later, his first of the season and first since returning from injury.

“Coming back from injury… it was tough working back, but all the great training staff really helped me get back to 100 percent,” Selvaggi said. “The play that we had, it was a bread-and-butter goal.”

Marquette will be back in action Friday night for the second game of their home stand. The Golden Eagles will welcome Nebraska-Omaha to the Valley. The Lancers jumped into Top Drawer Soccer’s Top 25 this week, currently holding the 22nd spot.

News and Notes

-Senior defenseman Adam Hermsen did not return in the second half after leaving with a hamstring tweak. Bennett said it’s nothing serious, but the team didn’t want a tweak to turn into a tear if he went back in too quickly.

-Islami continues to lead the team in scoring, adding a goal and an assist in this game. His seven points in four games already ties a career high.

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