Golden Eagles' Season Ends in 2-0 Loss at Science & Arts
CHICKASHA, Okla. (November 8, 2013) -- Despite keeping the No. 24 Drovers (13-4-0) at bay in the first half, top-seeded Science & Arts (Okla.) scored two second-half goals to end John Brown's (8-10-1) season this afternoon at Drover Pitch in the Sooner Athletic Conference quarterfinals.
The game was played in high winds and forced the Drovers and the Golden Eagles to alter the game plan in order to play in the difficult conditions.
"The wind today made the game a bit of a laugh," said head coach Scott Marksberry. "Both teams had to deal with it, though, and USAO scored goals when they had the wind, while we hit the post and missed quality chances when it was at our backs.
"We worked hard today and tried to execute, but there was never a flow to the match. It was a tough way to end the season for our seniors."
With the wind at its back, the Golden Eagles played an impressive first half, out-shooting the hosts 6-3 while owning a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks. John Brown pressed early in the first half and nearly took a 1-0 lead when sophomore Will Simonds' attempt deflected off the post maintaining the 0-0 deadlock.
JBU tested USAO netminder Bryan Byars three times in the first stanza as juniors Martin Gonzalez and Dakota Dresbach forced Byars to make a save while sophomore Eli Simonsen also had an opportunity to score in the 31st minute but was again denied.
With the field tilted in favor of the Drovers in the second have due to the playing conditions, USAO's Perry Sansford banged home a rebound in the box in the 69th minute after John Brown senior keeper Pablo Garcia deflected a would-be goal off the crossbar.
Science & Arts would double its lead in the just eight minutes later when Nicolas Alberto took a through ball and split the Golden Eagle defense before depositing a shot to the lower right corner of the net. Garcia came out to challenge Alberto, but ultimately had no chance.
After holding the advantage in the first half, the Golden Eagles were badly out-shot in the second stanza, 12-2, as Byars wasn't called upon to make a save after the Drovers took the lead.
Garcia (8-10-1) ends the season with the loss and recorded six saves in the effort. Byars (13-4-0) collected five saves in the clean sheet effort, collecting his eighth shutout of the season.
Five seniors played the last match of their collegiate careers: Luke Theimer, Misha Kolemasov, Pablo Garcia, Brandon Sikes and Andre Sandiford-Williams.
"These seniors have meant so much to our program," admitted Marksberry. "They have been through some major challenges within our program and have led and served this team with grace. Losing these five seniors will force our younger players to work even harder to fill in the gaps next season."