The DePauw University men’s soccer team took to the road this past weekend, facing a pair of strong opponents.
On Sept. 21, the Tigers traveled to Terre Haute to face Rose Hulman Institute of Technology. Rose Hulman came into the match ranked 18th in the nation and with a record of 4-3.
The first half of the match was hard fought and ended scoreless. The game winning goal came from senior forward Julian Gonzalez with 16 minutes left to play. Gonzalez’s shot ricocheted off the goalkeeper and into the net to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead. The assist was tallied to senior forward, Zach Hoffman.
Gonzalez’s goal was his sixth of the season and rounded his career total to 40. He is only the fourth Tiger in DePauw history to reach that mark.
The Tiger’s defense and goalkeeping held their ground, only allowing six shots with zero of them on goal. The victory over the Fightin’ Engineers brought DePauw’s record to 4-1-2.
The Tigers hoped to carry their momentum into their first NCAC match which was against the Oberlin College Yeomen.
After a six-hour drive to Northeast Ohio, the Tigers faced an Oberlin team with a 6-1 record on Saturday. The Yeoman come out firing on all cylinders, scoring their first goal just 19 seconds into the match. Oberlin struck a perfect shot from 20 yards that put the Tigers in an early hole.
The match settled down after the early action, but the Tigers couldn’t capitalize on their opportunities to find the back of the net in the first half.
Eventually, the Tigers found the net in the 83rd minute with yet another goal from Gonzalez. Gonzalez drew a penalty kick when an Oberlin defender fouled him on an acrobatic kick attempt inside the box. Gonzalez converted from the spot tying the game up at 1-1.
The Yeoman quickly responded scoring three minutes later in the 86th minute. The goal was the winner for Oberlin, who emergeded victorious in the 2-1 match.
The game was just as close and the score indicated. DePauw had 20 shots with nine on goal, while Oberlin only had 15 shots with eight on goal. One stat that the Tigers will hope to improve on in the coming week is corner kicks. The Tigers had zero on the day.
“Today we were a bit careless,” said Coach Brad Hauter. “We gave up a goal 19 seconds in and didn't press it at all. All in all, there were some good moments too, as we had some great opportunities and were able to put the early goal to bed and equalize late. We have a lot of work to do as we hit the critical stretch of the season.”
DePauw moves to 4-2-2 on the year and 0-1 in NCAC play, while Oberlin moves to 7-1. Saturday’s win was Oberlin’s first over the Tigers since 2013.
DePauw hopes to nab their first conference win this week when they face Kenyon College on Saturday.
“It is going to be important to be very sound defensively against two teams that have a lot of offensive firepower,” said Tommy Hinkebein, a senior midfielder, “Both teams play a counter pressure style of soccer trying to win it in our third of the field, and once we break that initial pressure, we will have a lot of area to attack.”