It was a long time coming, but the Fort Lewis College men’s soccer team got its much-deserved game-winning goal in a 1-0 overtime win Sunday at Martin Dirks Field against Adams State, after Loic Jean-Baptiste knocked in the winner two minutes into the extra period.
The Skyhawks (3-0-3, 1-0-1 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) outshot Adams State 20-14 in the match, and had a number of good looks, but were unable to find the winner in regular time. Fort Lewis went to overtime for the third consecutive match.
In the 92nd minute, Fort Lewis hit the Grizzlies (0-4, 0-2 RMAC) on a counter-attack that came from a cleared Adams State corner kick. After the ball was cleared up field, Ryan Lee received a pass, and found Brantley Bice on the right flank. Bice then found a cutting Jean-Baptiste, and he took two touches and slotted it into the bottom left corner of the net for the winner, and his third goal of the season.
“It was a hard game today,” Jean-Baptiste said. “We had a lot of positivity today, and we were unlucky to be tied (after 90 minutes). I saw Brantley behind the defender, I asked him for the ball, and he gave me a great pass. I took my touch, and boom – goal.”
The Skyhawks outshot the Grizzlies 11-8 in the first half and also led 9-8 in shots in the second half. Fort Lewis’ back line, alongside redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Peter Byrne, recorded the third shutout of the season.
“It feels great, especially to keep the clean sheet,” said defender Denis Celik. “It’s so tough mentally to get through overtime and keep fighting to keep the intensity high, but we did a great job today. I’m proud of our back line. It wasn’t our best game, but we got the job done.”
In the first half, the Grizzlies created a few chances, including a bicycle kick attempt from Greysen Gilman that went over the bar in the seventh minute, while Gillman had another shot in the 22nd minute that also was just wide. Fort Lewis’ best opportunity came from Max Fuentes Carrera, who hit the crossbar in the 21st minute.
“Obviously, for us to go 90-plus means we’re doing some things right and are battling against quality teams,” said Adams State head coach Matthew Munhall.
“I was disappointed in the way we started the game and thought we were a little slow and were second to a lot of things,” said FLC head coach David Oberholtzer. “I thought we responded well, especially in the start of second half. We started creating a bunch of really good chances, and thought we were unfortunate to not get one earlier and have it go to overtime, but that seems to be a trend for us right now.”
In the second half, the Skyhawks were dangerous on set pieces, as they had two free kicks, as well as six corner kicks, but could not find the breakthrough. Entering the final 15 minutes of the match, Fort Lewis looked the more likely side to grab a winner, but Jean-Baptiste’s shot in the 82nd minute just curled wide. Oberholtzer thought he was one of Fort Lewis’ most consistent attackers on the day.
“He’s had a really great start, has been fun to watch and does a lot for us going forward,” Oberholtzer said. “Today, he did good job of holding up play for us when he was playing up top and allowing the rest of the group to join. He’s so deceptive in his movement, and is so composed on the ball, and was unlucky to only have the one on the day. I think he’s going to continue to be dangerous moving forward.”
Fort Lewis will take on Colorado Christian at 12:30 p.m. Friday in Lakewood.
Women’s SoccerRegis 4, Fort Lewis 1The Fort Lewis College women’s soccer team wrapped up its longest road trip of the year with a 4-1 loss to Regis on Sunday in Denver.
The Skyhawks (1-3-1, 0-1-1 RMAC) tied the game at 1-1 in the 46th minute after Val Maestas placed the ball into the upper frame of the net. The Rangers (4-1-1, 2-0 RMAC) then put three past the Skyhawks, with goals in the 52nd, 77th and 82nd minute.
“That’s probably one of the best Regis teams I’ve ever seen, if not the best I’ve seen from them,” said FLC head coach Damian Clarke. “This team was an absolute handful. We were fortunate to tie it, and got a bit of a foothold in the game, but then we couldn’t sustain it.
“The girls fought really hard, and we gave up a couple of goals looking for our second.”
In the span of eight days, the Skyhawks have traveled 2,500 miles, which included Friday’s RMAC opener against Black Hills State in Spearfish, South Dakota, that finished in a 0-0 overtime tie.
“I don’t know if there’s another program in the country that the coaches have been driving 2,500 miles,” Clarke said.
“It makes it hard. When it comes down to it and you’re not driving, you’re able to process and think about the game, and Hope Frederick and I are behind the wheel for long stretches of time. It’s been difficult for all of us, but we’re looking to rest on Friday, and refocus ourselves for Sunday.”
The Skyhawks will end a five-game road trip when they travel to Alamosa for a clash against Adams State (2-3, 0-2 RMAC) at 11 a.m. Sunday.
VolleyballChadron State 3, Fort Lewis 0The Fort Lewis College volleyball team showed plenty of fight Saturday night against Chadron State but fell in three sets, 28-26, 28-26 and 25-21.
FLC recorded 51 kills and 81 digs, compared to just 22 kills during Friday’s three-set loss to Metropolitan State.
“It was a completely different team from the one that played Metro on Friday,” said FLC head coach Tricia Melfy. “Our energy was great, we gelled and our communication was much better.”
The Skyhawks (4-7, 0-2 RMAC) were led by senior middle blocker Bailey Longacre, as she recorded her second consecutive match with a hitting percentage above .500. Longacre had a season-high 18 kills, while Chandler Karr had 11 kills and Alexa Treguboff had nine kills and 21 digs.
The Skyhawks will host Colorado School of Mines at 7 p.m. Friday inside Whalen Gymnasium.
“I like that we’re at home, and we’ve got a lot more matches under our belts, and we are really starting to figure it out with our team chemistry,” Melfy said. “Once we figure it out with our 12 new players and who works best with whom, we’re going to be much harder to beat, and we hope that will be the case Friday.”