The Emmaus men’s soccer team wrapped up their final regular season match on Saturday when they travelled to Chicago, Illinois to take on the Archers of Moody Bible Institute. Emmaus came into the match looking for their third win in a row and their first ever against Moody.
The Emmaus men’s soccer team kicked off their final home match of the season on Tuesday afternoon when they hosted the Red Lions of Lincoln Christian University (Lincoln, IL). It was senior night, and the current batch of six Emmaus seniors had yet to defeat Lincoln in their Emmaus careers.
The Emmaus Eagles continued their season on Thursday afternoon when they hosted conference rival Faith Baptist Bible College (Ankeny, IA). The two teams had played to a 0-0 draw just 9 days earlier in Ankeny, and Emmaus was eager for another opportunity to finally get on the board after having dominated possession, shots, and corners in their previous meeting.
The Emmaus soccer men travelled to Ankeny on Tuesday to take on their in-state rivals, the Eagles of Faith Baptist Bible College. The two teams entered the match with identical records of 6 wins, 2 losses, and had plenty to play for with the top seed for the MCCC Conference tournament at stake
The Emmaus soccer men took the field on Wednesday afternoon, hosting the Red Devils of Eureka University. The Eagles, coming off of two MCCC conference wins over the weekend, knew that they would need to up their game against a talented Eureka side.
The Eagles played their second match of the weekend on Saturday when they took on the Warriors of Calvary University. The sun was shining when the two teams took the field, with Emmaus coming off of a 4-1 victory over Ozark the night before and Calvary losing a nail biter 0-1 in overtime to Faith Baptist.
The Emmaus Eagles travelled to Eureka, Illinois on Saturday to take on the Red Devils of Eureka College. Both teams entered the match with matching records at 3 wins and 1 loss, and the history between the two teams had both expecting a hard fought and very physical match. The game did not disappoint.
“Our guys picked a tough day to make some big mistakes that sort of put the game out of reach early, which is unfortunate with how well we have been playing lately. Still, they fought on, and I know they are better than the score showed today. I wouldn’t trade this year for any other, and I love working with this group who shows me time and time again not only how to play hard, but that they want to grow where it matters most… in conformity to Christ’s image. And our season isn’t done yet… we get to play again on Thursday at home against Moody Bible Institute, and I can’t wait to see how our guys fight with their season on the line. What a joy to coach them!” (Coach Brown)
The second day of the tournament saw Emmaus matched up with the #2 seeded Eagles of Faith Baptist Bible College (Ankeny, IA) after Faith defeated the hosts, Ozark Christian, by a score of 4-0. The “Eagle” matchup marked the 3rd of the season for the two teams with both teams winning at home. The third match between the two was set to determine who would play for the conference title Saturday afternoon.
“I won’t lie, for a brief second the thought crossed my mind ‘here we go again’,” said Coach Brown. “We have outplayed teams on several occasions this season only to fail to capitalize on opportunities and then to give up goals against the run of play. I was really interested to see how our guys would respond. They did not disappoint!”
The second half saw a momentum shift toward the Eagles as they began to send wave after wave forward. Mason McCarl (#7) faked a defender in the back and saw his left footed effort cradled by the Johnson at the near post. Minutes later Anthony Flores (#10) weaved his way through the Eureka defense, only to have Johnson block his shot to the near post.
With the clock winding down and Maranatha clinging to their one goal lead, Emmaus launched a final counter attack. After a long pass by Elijah Barsness, neat settle by Carson McBain (#11), and a cut by Mason McCarl (#7), Emmaus watched as McCarl’s shot sailed just over the goal at the literal last second.
The Eagles came out fired up in the second half and made some adjustments based on injuries in the back line, but it was Moody who added to their lead in the 58th minute when a the Eagles failed to cover the back post on a low cross.
The Emmaus men’s soccer team travelled to Eureka, Illinois on Thursday to take on the Red Devils of Eureka College. It was the first match in several weeks that did not see temperatures sore into the high 80s, and the Eagles were roaring to play despite a short roster.
The Eagles got off to a great start in the match as Anthony Flores (#10) sent in a great cross in the 7th minute that sophomore Nick Fairley (#9) calmly finished to give Emmaus the 1-0 lead. Ten minutes later it was Ozark’s turn when #10 Cotan Ceinbach fired in a left footed shot off of a set piece after a poor Emmaus clearance.
“We played about as dominant of a first half as a team can and just struggled to find the back of the net despite some great chances. I told the guys at halftime to just keep playing the way they had been and to focus on keeping their shots on frame.” (Coach Brown)
“Our guys played so hard today. We created chances, played good defense, and made some great decisions on the field. Manhattan is always a tough team and I thought our guys really made them earn it today even with tired legs and some unfortunate injuries. The good news is that we proved that we can play with them and we made some mistakes that we can correct, so this was really a great game for us to build on.” (Coach Brown)
The Eagles continued to right, with Mason McCarl (#7) hitting the post in the 80th minute right before Eli Gioja (#2) saw his left-footed shot sail just wide of the top corner of the Faith goal. The final score of 5-0 stood.
Emmaus came out of the half strong after a few tactical changes. Sophomore Carson McBain (#11) vacated his normal position of central midfielder for a short stint on the left wing to great effect. Just four minutes into the second half, McBain beat the Royals’ fullback to the byline, cut in, and played a perfect lay-off pass to Mason McCarl (So. #9), who slotted home to give Emmaus the 2-1 lead, which would last for the rest of the game.
The second match of the weekend saw the Eagles face off with a tough Red Lions squad coached by a tough competitor, Craig Hoskins. The Red Lions looked dangerous early, playing in some dangerous balls to outstanding forward, Keaton Doty (#22) which required senior defender Elijah Barsness (#1) to make a goal line save. Following those early Lion surges the Eagles began to settle in and create some dangerous attacks of their own, with Nick Fairly just missing the goal on a driven ball in the 16th minute.