LeMay's First Collegiate Goal Drives Drake Past Green Bay, 2-1
GREEN BAY, Wis. - Redshirt freshman Ben LeMay (Hugo, Minn./Saint Thomas Academy) recorded his first collegiate goal, a game-winning tally, to lift the Drake men’s soccer team to a 2-1 victory at Green Bay (6-4-3) on Tuesday (Oct. 15).
“Today was a clichéd example of perseverance through adversity,” Bulldog head coach Sean Holmes commented. “Facing a competitive team, playing at home, in miserable weather conditions, we set the tone scoring early off a great back-post header by Bryan (Jantsch). But we then got sloppy and after wasting several good chances to score, we gave up a silly goal, which made matters more difficult than they needed to be.”
Senior Bryan Jantsch (Mission Hills, Kan./Rockhurst) gave Drake (6-5-2) an early 1-0 advantage on the strength of this third goal of the season at the 4:05 mark. Setting up Jantsch with the first of his two assists on the afternoon was redshirt junior Logan North (St. Charles, Mo./Francis Howell North).
The Bulldogs held the momentum until allowing Lawrence Talery to curve a ball in from the corner of the box to square the contest at one in the 25th minute (24:25).
The two teams entered the intermission tied at one, with Drake maintaining a slim 6-5 margin in shots.
“I felt the goal in the second half was always coming as we continued to push the ball up the field,” said Holmes.
That tally came at the 77:06 mark off a pass from North delivered to perfection off the foot of LeMay.
The Bulldogs continued to buckle down defensively the rest of the game en route to limiting the Phoenix to four second-half shots. Offensively over the final 45 minutes, Drake posted a 13-4 advantage in shots.
“It was fitting that Ben (LeMay), our redshirt freshman, scored the game-winning tally,” stated Holmes. “We should have put it away well before then, but we were able go out on the road and get a result in a difficult place to play.”
Holmes praised the efforts of his bench as the Bulldogs played 18 players in the game.
“What was great about our performance was that lots of different players contributed off the bench, something we have been preaching all season long, and today that came to fruition. Mitchell (Smith) played long periods at the left back, while Austin (Reutzel) gave us quality minutes spelling Alec (Bartlett). The efforts of these two along with Eric (Williams), Danton (Irelan), Alex (Troester), Jackson (Teeling) and Jonah (Waldron) allowed us to play 18 players this afternoon, so it was a really good team effort.
Holmes also talked about the effort of redshirt freshman James Grunert (Muskego, Wis./Muskego) in his return to his home state of Wisconsin.
“Jimmy (Grunert), back in his home state for the fourth game this season, playing the whole 90 minutes in the back, was really solid.”
The Bulldogs notched a 19-9 advantage in shots in the affair, led by a pair of four-shot performances from Jantsch and redshirt junior Jarred Arde (Gulfport, Miss./Gulfport). Talery paced the Green Bay attack with three shots.
“We are not a team looking to grind out ties on the road and Bryan (Jantsch) was absolutely terrific for us today,” stated Holmes. “Again Mueng (Sunday) is one of the best freshmen in the country and he was everywhere today and he is now becoming more of an attacking presence as the season wears on.”
Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod (Waterloo, Ontario/Resurrection Catholic) collected three saves for Drake, while Green Bay goalkeeper Kyle Ihn made six saves.
“We didn’t give Darrin (MacLeod) a lot of work today, but when called upon he was solid,” commented Holmes.
Holmes went on to talk about the importance of getting quality wins, especially on the road if the Bulldogs want to make a case for NCAA Tournament consideration.
“Green Bay is the only team to beat Milwaukee this season, a Panther team which we tied and is receiving votes in the national poll. We are blessed our RPI didn’t fall after our loss to Missouri State, but we want to continue on the right side of the ledger. Our last two non-conference games at Creighton and UIC (Illinois at Chicago) are important for us and the conference. If you want to cement your RPI, you have to steal results on the road.”
Drake will have little time to savor the victory over Green Bay as SIU Edwardsville comes to the Cownie Soccer Complex for a Missouri Valley Conference showdown on Saturday (Oct. 19). Game time is set for 7:00 p.m.