Men’s Soccer Team Suffers First Loss of the Season

After going 8–0 in non-league play to start off the 2010 season, the Carnegie Mellon men’s soccer team suffered an unexpected loss to University Athletic Association (UAA) conference rival the University of Chicago this past Saturday. The Tartans had just moved up to No. 2 in the NSCAA/ Division III rankings last Tuesday, the highest ranking in the team's history. Unfortunately, mid-season knocks and a tough road schedule wore down the Tartans last weekend.

Carnegie Mellon was supposed to play earlier last week, but bad weather forced Bethany College (W.Va.) to postpone the mid-week game. The men instead directed their attention to beginning conference play. Circumstances kept sophomores Zach Staal and John Crawshaw, goalkeeper and midfielder respectively, from playing, resulting in a slightly different lineup against the University of Chicago Maroons.

The first half saw little action, and neither team made the most of its opportunities, resulting in a scoreless game at the break. Ten minutes into the second half, the Tartans were able to pull ahead after the upperclassman duo of senior Max Betzig and junior Kyle Young connected and got Young his third goal this season. The notorious Chicago winds created sloppy playing conditions that inadvertently benefited the Maroons, as they were able to tie the game in the 75th minute off a 25-yard free kick.

The scoreline remained level at the end of regular play, and the teams needed overtime to decide the contest. Having already gotten away with two overtime victories this season, the Tartans were not as fortunate the third time around. A costly error in the midfield forced a turnover and a breakaway goal to give Chicago the win against Carnegie Mellon.

“The playing conditions were pretty bad in Chicago, but at the end of the day we were overall just disappointed with our performance. Now we are looking forward to finally coming back and playing at home for the first time in about a month,” junior co-captain Ian Epperson said.

The Cardinal and Gray’s next game is against another tough opponent, as Carnegie Mellon faces Washington University (Mo.) at home this Sunday at 1:30 p.m.