Omaha men’s soccer falls short in overtime games

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Jack Hoover
SPORTS EDITOR

Several UNO soccer players standing on the sideline of the field
The Omaha men’s soccer team bench in a game against Michigan. Photo by Timothy Eaves/the Gateway

Losing off a “golden-goal” in overtime may be one of the cruelest ways to lose a game.

Losing twice in that way is twice as cruel.

The Omaha men’s soccer team was feeling that cruelty as they played their last two non-conference games before getting into conference play. On Sept. 27, the Mavericks took on California State University of Northridge (CSUN) at home and, on Oct. 1, they played Missouri State on the road. Both of those games ended with overtime golden goals.

Against CSUN, the Mavericks started the game off strongly. In the seventh minute of the game, Omaha was awarded a penalty kick that junior Aaron Uribe converted to put his team up 1-0. The Mavericks took the 1-0 lead into halftime.

After playing a stout defensive game for much of the second half, Omaha’s defense was broken in the 77th minute of the game. CSUN’s Daniel Trejo controlled a long pass into the Maverick box before finishing a low, well-placed shot into the goal.

The Mavericks turned up the intensity on offense after the equalizer but were unable to break through for the remainder of regulation time. The game would be decided in overtime after CSUN’s Johnny Rodriguez tapped in the ball from within the eight-yard box, giving the Matadors a win and leaving Maverick fans devastated.

Looking to rebound from that loss, Omaha got on the road to play the undefeated No. 17 Missouri State Bears. While it was a difficult task for the Mavericks to take on, they seemed up to the challenge for 106 minutes.

Overall, the game was lacking on offense, as the two teams had a combined nine shots between them, four for the Mavericks and five for the Bears. A large reason why there wasn’t much offense in the game was the outstanding defensive play of the Mavericks. Going up against a Missouri State offense that was averaging 2.13 goals and 12.9 shots per game, Omaha remained solid in stifling the Bear’s attack.

Again, however, the Mavericks would find their defense broken in overtime. After playing to a scoreless tie in regulation, the Bears finally broke the deadlock in the 107th minute of the game after Ben Stroud got on the end of a free kick to tap the ball into the goal. The Mavericks, for the second game in the row, lost in overtime.

Now, Omaha will have to turn their focus to Summit League conference play. The team is off to a 1-0-0 start in conference play after defeating Western Illinois 3-1 on Oct. 5. The next game for Omaha is Oct. 12 at 2 p.m. The game can be streamed online at OMavs.com or listened to at Mavradio.fm.

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