Bearcats Build 3-0 Lead, Hold Off Missionaries, 3-2

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University scored three first-half goals, including two in a 36-second span, then held off Whitman College in the final 15 minutes for a 3-2 win on Sunday, Nov. 1 at Sparks Field. The Bearcats improved to 5-13-0 on the season, including 4-9-0 in the Northwest Conference. The Missionaries fell to 4-11-3 overall, 3-8-2 in the NWC.

Willamette University 3
Whitman College 2

Erik Kaufman (So., F, Portland, OR/Grant HS) scored the game's first goal at 7:13 on a shot from 5 yards. He was assisted by Tom Farr (So., MF, Seattle, WA/Ballard HS) and Tim Ikehara-Martin (Fr., MF, Vancouver, WA/Heritage HS).

Farr started the play with a pass from the left side to just past the right post. Ikehara-Martin headed the ball down and back toward the middle. Kaufman shot to his left, past Whitman goalkeeper Nic McDonald.

It was Kaufman's team-leading seventh goal of the year and 13th goal during his first two seasons at Willamette.

Willamette tallied the second goal at 30:02 and the third goal at 30:38. Brendan Dineen (So., D, Portland, OR/Grant HS) started the two-goal outburst with a header from three yards out on a corner kick. Luke Lagattuta (Sr., MF/D, Albuquerque, NM/Highland HS) took the corner and assisted on the play.

Etienne Galbreath (Fr., F/MF, Portland, OR/Grant HS) scored the next goal after beating McDonald to a loose ball near the top right corner of the penalty area. Galbreath immediately shot into the empty net. Lagattuta, whose pass set up the play, received his second assist of the afternoon.

The Bearcats outshot Whitman 10-7 in the opening half, but the Missionaries earned a 9-1 edge in shots over the final 45 minutes. Five of Whitman's shots were in the final nine minutes.

Jordan Thomas scored the first goal for the Missionaries at 77:00 on a 10-yard shot from on the left side of the field. His goal was assisted by Todd Wallenius.

Whitman had a chance to pull within a single goal at 85:57, when a penalty kick was awarded after a handball by Willamette in the penalty area.

Wallenius took the penalty kick and struck the ball hard, but it hit the left post and bounced back onto the field. Sam Freedman connected on a follow-up shot from 10 yards out, but WU goalie Mark Bennett (Sr., Salt Lake City, UT/West HS) registered a save.

The Missionaries scored for the second time at 88:30 on an own goal by the Bearcats. Wallenius sent the ball toward the penalty area and a Willamette defender went up for a header. The ball deflected behind the defender and found its way into the left corner of the net.

Wallenius took another shot at 89:11, but the ball sailed over the goal. It was the last shot of the game by either team.

Bennett recorded eight saves for the Bearcats, including a couple of spectacular saves that kept Whitman off the scoreboard in the first half. McDonald made one save for Whitman. Tim Shu played in goal for the Missionaries in the second half, but did not earn a save.

Willamette, which began the day in seventh place in the NWC standings, moved into a tie for fifth place with Linfield College. Both teams are 4-9 for 12 points. The Bearcats will close out the season by hosting Linfield on Saturday, Nov. 7 at 1:30 p.m. (PST).

Luke Lagattuta recorded two assists in 32 seconds in the first half.

Luke Lagattuta recorded two assists in 32 seconds in the first half.