The comeback team

Calvin men’s soccer won with narrow, come-from-behind victories in their games against Wooster College on Saturday, Sept. 14 and against Aquinas College on Tuesday Sept. 17. 

Against Wooster, Calvin started slow as Wooster dominated the field of play, but both teams had slight goal scoring opportunities early. With Wooster maintaining early pressure, Wooster was awarded a penalty from a foul with 22 minutes left in the half, which they converted to take a 1-0 lead. 

After this goal, the momentum shifted and Calvin became energized, mounting up pressure with chance after chance. Within three minutes late in the half they won a free kick right outside the box, which missed wide, and managed a threatening counter attack but missed high, allowing Wooster to maintain their 1-0 lead as the first half concluded. 

As the second half started, Calvin kept up their relenting pressure from the end of the first half. Ten minutes into the second half, Calvin won a corner and produced an equalizing goal with  header from junior center back Drew Van Andel. After this goal, the tide of the game began to go back and forth with both sides unable to score a winning goal in regulation, so the match went to extra time with the first to score taking the match. 

In extra time senior Hunter Olsen scored a thrilling game-winner for Calvin off of a bobbled deflection from the keeper, giving Calvin the narrow 2-1 victory over Wooster.

The drama persisted for Calvin when facing Aquinas in a similar match this past Tuesday. Calvin, in the same vein against Wooster, allowed Aquinas to strike first as they scored a goal in the 29th minute. Throughout this half Calvin struggled to generate chances as they had only one real opportunity off of a brilliant corner from senior forward Ian Adams, which is Calvin’s typical way of scoring. 

Unable to tie the game in the first half, the second half kicked off with some hope, but Aquinas managed to score another goal in the 61st minute to increase its lead to 2-0. Shortly after, the Knights were able to get a goal back as Hunter Olsen scored off a throw in to cut Aquinas’s lead to 2-1. 

With the Knights eager to make another comeback, they kept the pressure on Aquina and were finally able to equalize in the 85th minute with a token header from Drew Van Andel to make the score 2-2. 

The teams didn’t score during the remaining five minutes in regulation, but Calvin scored the game winner a mere three minutes into extra time off of another header from Van Andel to secure another come-from-behind victory in thrilling fashion. 

The team has started with a solid record of 6-1. As they head closer to conference play the team still feels that they have much room for improvement, as freshman center back Aguma Muhumuza said, “At certain times we play at a level that no other team can reach; however, we fail to play at this level at a consistent basis, but I feel we are moving in the right direction.” 

The men’s soccer team will face Carthage next Friday at 7 p.m.