The scoring came early and often for the St. Thomas men’s soccer team (2-1) as it recorded all three of its goals in the first half to defeat Northwestern College 3-0.
It took the Tommies only two minutes to record the game’s first goal as junior Angel Riera ripped a one-timer from the top of the box past Eagles senior goalkeeper Josh Niedermayer.
Later in the first half, sophomore Adam Wieckert, who recently transferred from Wartburg College in Iowa, out-jumped a swarm of defenders to head in the Tommies’ second goal. To top off the scoring, senior Elliot Amundson recorded his 11th career goal with 1:30 remaining in the first half.
Head Coach Aaron Macke was happy with his team’s play in the first half.
“We knew the first five to ten minutes was going to be extremely important tonight, and we met the challenge,” Macke said. “Each game we put a few coaching points up on the board, giving us some challenges to meet, and today it was to be more defensively organized, to take advantage of our opportunities, and to have more tenacity on defense. We did that.”
Senior goalkeeper Alexander Benson played all 90 minutes in goal and recorded his first shutout of the season. The Tommie defense limited the Eagles to just two shots on goal.
“We came out a lot harder than we normally have,” said sophomore forward Adam Wieckert. “The last two games we’ve come out a little slow. We had to pick up our tenacity on defense, and we did that pretty well.”
The game against Northwestern was the third of a six-game non-conference stretch for the Tommies. The team will board a bus to Aberdeen, S.D. Friday to begin a three-game road series that starts with the Presentation College Saints (0-3).
“It’s a game that if we go out and play quality soccer should give us a win,” Macke said.
The Tommies are ranked second in the preseason MIAC conference rankings. The team begins conference play Sept. 18 at home against Augsburg College.
Ryan Shaver can be reached at email@example.com.