Two penalties and a late goal from junior Brian Schultz saw the men’s soccer team walk away from the Red Line Rivalry against the Loyola Ramblers with a 2-1 come-from-behind win Tuesday afternoon at Wish Field.
The midfielder’s goal came in the 81st minute off of his own rebound. After trying to back-heel Jalen Harvey’s header, Schultz picked up his own rebound and poked his shot through to the far post to give DePaul (2-3-0) a late lead towards the team’s second win of the season.
“It’s all a blur,” said Schultz of his first goal of the season. “Coach [Craig Blazer] has told us all year we need to be dangerous on free kicks and corners. Jared [Blincow] told me he was right there to tap in as well, so the goal could have been scored by anybody.”
Blazer’s advice in the final 15 minutes of the match helped the team to victory, said Schultz.
“Coach told us to keep our composure, keep the ball, and control our passing,” he said. “I’m proud of the effort from our boys.”
That effort included coming back from a 1-0 deficit at half and grabbing both the equalizer and winner in the second half.
Loyola (0-4-0) took the lead minutes before halftime behind James Howe’s penalty. Freshman defender Harvey – making his first career start – tripped Eric Nock in the 40th minute to concede the spot kick. Howe calmly stepped up and buried the penalty to the center of the goal.
Loyola’s lead came after a fairly even first half in which both teams forced the opposition keeper into making saves, albeit not as a result of clear-cut chances. Eric Sorby made four saves in the half while his counterpart, Peter McKeown, made three.
DePaul grabbed the equalizer quickly in the second half behind Antonio Aguilar. Freshman forward Drew Dempsey, starting in his third consecutive match as a forward, pulled a nice turn in front of the Ramblers backline, feeding Aguilar in on goal. Aguilar was then taken down by McKeown to draw the penalty, which the senior midfielder promptly put in the back of the net.
The win for DePaul comes following a 3-0 loss to the now ranked Southern Illinois-Edwardsville Cougars Friday night away from home. Severe weather pushed the match back from its scheduled 6 p.m. start time to 8:40 p.m.
“It’s the world,” Schultz said of grabbing a victory after Friday’s defeat. “We’ve had some bad luck against Western Illinois and Western Michigan, lost to SIU-E. To come back to Wish Field is huge. We need to get a win Friday to keep this going.”
The victory in the Red Line Rivalry also has some added significance for the men’s soccer team, having already defeated UIC to open the season with a 2-1 win.
“One of our goals this year is to be the best Chicago team,” Schultz said. “We’ve got Northwestern left. It’d be great to get a sweep of the city teams.”
Next up for the team is a road trip to Ohio State on Friday. Kickoff is scheduled at 6 p.m.
Head coach Craig Blazer was unavailable for comment after the match, however he praised the performance of Eric Sorby in goal. “It’s good to have Eric Sorby back. He played like we know he can and was one of our Men of the Match.”
The Blue Demons started five freshmen Tuesday in Michael Kozielek, Drew Dempsey, Jalen Harvey, Joe Brinckwirth and Brian Hindle. It was the first career starts for both Harvey and Brinckwirth.
Antonio Aguilar, David Selvaggi and Thiago Ganancio all came off the bench. The trio led the team in scoring last year behind Aguilar’s and Selvaggi’s seven goals and Ganancio’s three. The match was also Ganancio’s first minutes since coming back from injury.
Former Blue Demon Brian Lunar started the match for Loyola and played the full 90 minutes. The sophomore from Oak Lawn, Ill., played rightback last season for DePaul before transferring to the Ramblers in the offseason.