The Indiana Tech men’s soccer squad is on quite a roll of late and it rode the leg of a Fort Wayne native on Sunday to claim its fourth consecutive victory.
The Warriors got a goal from Bishop Luers High School graduate Will Johnson to get by Shawnee State University 1-0 at Bishop D’Arcy Stadium on the campus of Saint Francis.
Johnson booted in the game’s only goal just over two minutes into the contest, while the stout Warrior defense made the goal stand.
"A team has to be satisfied anytime you can win on back-to-back days and get to 4-0 on top of that,” Warrior coach David Bokhart said in a release. “I think we played two very hard working teams this weekend that pushed us and forced us to do things differently than we need to.”
Just over two minutes into the match, Indiana Tech junior keeper Reece Richardson sent a long ball down the field that Johnson collected in the attacking third. He worked his way around a couple Shawnee State defenders before ripping a shot from the top of the box underneath the Bear’s netminder to give the Warriors a very early 1-0 advantage.
With Tech still clinging to the slim lead midway through the second half, Shawnee State had one of its better opportunities to even the score. The Bears (0-4) were able to finally get by the Warrior defense with a quick counter attack and as Richardson came out to challenge Shawnee State’s Dylan Stevens. Stevens tried to chip the ball over Richardson but the shot sailed wide of the goal.
“We have to do better dictating the game and putting our opponents on their heels,” Bokhart said. “We have the personnel to do that and must find the right rhythm and balance.”
Warrior freshman Zach St. Aubin nearly put the game away with six minutes to go after creating a turnover deep in the Shawnee State end. He had just the goalie to beat, but could never get a good enough handle on the ball to get off a shot.
The Bears had one final chance to tie the game with less than two minutes left on the clock. Coming off a free kick from 25 yards out, Shawnee State sent the kick into the box but Richardson made a great play on the ball and batted it away to end the threat.
“I’m still pleased with the overall ability of the team and how we’ll come together,” Bokhart said. “I’m also proud of our diversity in that we can make 4-5 changes to the team from one day to the next and still get a result. As much talk as there has been about some of our international flavor, some of our biggest difference makers have been our local products and Midwestern kids. Zach is our top player through four games and Will has made a case for our Fort Wayne guys that Tech can find success with these kinds of guys. Hopefully we can strike the right balance between experience, youth, international and ’traditional’ high school products.”
The Warriors will travel to Trinity Christian College on Friday.