The Gustie Men’s soccer team extended their winning streak to three games this past week with gritty victories over two conference foes.
Last Wednesday, Gustavus hosted St. Olaf in a makeup contest and secured a close 1-0 victory. The Oles threatened several times early in the match, including a shot that glanced off the post, but managed just 4 shots in the game compared to Gustavus’ 18.
The lone goal of the game came at the 22-minute mark when First-year Raphael Cattelin notched his seventh goal of the season, with assists going to Sophomore Cole Schwartz and Junior Matthew Gibbons.
The Gusties dominated possession in the second half, though St. Olaf did manage to get two good looks at the net late in the contest. First-year Wesley Sanders made two saves in the contest and Gustavus held on for the victory.
On Saturday, Gustavus travelled to Collegeville for a grudge match against Saint John’s.
Gustavus came out of the gates hot, jumping onto the scoreboard just three minutes into the contest with a nice goal from Shwartz, his 13th of the year.
Cattelin got the assist on the goal and then went on to chip in a goal of his own in the 23rd minute on a lofty corner kick from Gibbons.
Gustavus outshot the home team 12-6 and took a 2-0 lead into halftime, and it appeared as though the Gusties might cruise to another easy victory.
However, persistence is a hallmark of the Saint John’s team, and the Johnnies didn’t succumb easily.
“We knew their whole game plan is to just keep grinding and keep high energy the entire game,” Senior defender Will Richards said.
Saint John’s struck early in the second half at the 47-minute mark, and then again in the 67th minute to even things at 2. A tense and scoreless 23 minutes followed, and regulation ended in a stalemate.
Saint John’s was the first opponent to take Gustavus into overtime this season.
In the first half of overtime, the Gusties showed no qualms in this high-pressure situation, outshooting the Johnnies 4-1, but were unable to muster a goal.
The second overtime period was also dominated by the Gusties, and as the momentum mounted a goal began to feel inevitable.
Finally, in the 107th minute, Junior Scott Heinen lined up for a corner kick and sent the ball sailing towards the goal. Senior defender Joe Brandel muscled his way into position and headed the ball into the net.
“We did well in overtime to earn some big scoring chances off of corners, and [Brandel] did super well on the goal to be physically dominant in the box and put the ball in the net. We were extremely proud after that game knowing that we have the ability to match and even outwork a team whose entire game plan relies on being the high energy team,” Richards said.
Head Coach Tudor Flintham was energized after the close victory.
“Another massive MIAC win and three points. Saint John’s is always kind of the same because you just have to grind them out and no win is an easy win. Our scout was good and our plan was good and it was the game that we expected it to be,” Flintham said.
Sanders got his 10th win of the season in net, allowing two goals while making five saves.
Raphael Cattelin’s performances in the past week earned him Athlete of the Week honors for MIAC men’s soccer. The First-year forward played an integral role in the team’s victories and currently ranks third in NCAA DIII men’s soccer with 12 assists.
Most recently, the team took on Bethel University at home Oct. 16.
After a slow start, the Gusties and Royals went into halftime tied 0-0. However, a flip switched for the Black and Gold in the second half as they went on to win the contest 4-0.
Cattelin got the scoring started at the 57-minute mark. Junior Leo Spry then left his impact on the game, notching two goals in succession during the 72nd and 76th minute. Schwartz rounded out the scoring for the team with a goal in the 82nd minute off an assist from First-year Nick Katzman.
With these wins, the Gusties move to 11-2 and are currently tied for first place in the MIAC with St. Thomas.
They are next in action 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19 at the Gustie Soccer Field when they face Carleton College, one of the most competitive teams in the MIAC.