Kaufman Scores with 0:05 Left in Overtime, as Willamette Defeats Linfield, 2-1

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Sophomore forward Erik Kaufman (Portland, OR/Grant HS) scored his second goal of the game with five seconds left in the first overtime to send Willamette University to a 2-1 victory over Linfield College on Saturday, Nov. 7 at Sparks Field.

Willamette University 2
Linfield College 1 (OT)

The Bearcats ended the season at 6-13 overall, 5-9 in the Northwest Conference. Linfield fell to 5-13-1 overall, 4-10 in the NWC.

Willamette finished the year in sole possession of fifth place in the NWC standings with 15 points (3 for a win, 1 for a tie). Linfield concluded the season in sixth place with 12 points. The Bearcats and the Wildcats began the day tied for fifth.

Kaufman opened the scoring with an unassisted goal 14:45 into the game, as he sent a shot from 16 yards into the lower left corner of the goal. The shot occurred after a lengthy pass from Patrick Yagi (Fr., D, Sammamish, WA/Eastlake HS) near midfield went off a defender in the Linfield penalty area and found its way to Kaufman.

Linfield goalkeeper John Thompson kept the Wildcats in the game with six saves in the first half and two more saves before the end of regulation. He made several outstanding saves.

The Wildcats tied the score at 77:02 on a goal by Nick Powers. Powers shot from 24 yards on the right side of the field, blasting the ball into the left side of the net.

WU goalie Eben Hellekson (Jr., Honolulu, HI/University Laboratory School) earned just one save in the first half, but registered four in the second half, including a couple of key stops.

The quality goalkeeping continued during the overtime period. Hellekson sent a header by Kurtis Wong of Linfield over the net 3:57 into overtime. He also made a diving save to push the ball past the goal on a blast by Travis Isaacs from the left side with 1:41 left in the extra session. The shot was targeted for the upper right corner.

Thompson also prevented a quality shot from going into the net, when he recorded a save on an 18-yard effort by Tim Ikehara-Martin (Fr., MF, Vancouver, WA/Heritage HS) with 29 seconds left in overtime. Ikehara-Martin's shot looked like a potential game-winner, as it was on its way toward the upper left corner before Thompson snagged the ball.

Willamette stopped Linfield's ensuing attack before the Wildcats reached the final third of the field. The Bearcats then headed upfield with the game's final offensive surge.

Luke Lagattuta (Sr., MF/D, Albuquerque, NM/Highland HS) eventually had possession near the left sideline about 23 yards out. He sent the ball forward to Etienne Galbreath (Fr., F/D, Portland, OR/Grant HS), who reached it just before it went over the end line.

Galbreath sent the ball to Kaufman, who shot from four yards out near the left post. The ball crossed the goal line near the right post.

Kaufman scored in each of WU's final three games of the season. He finished the year as the Bearcats' leading scorer with nine goals and two assists for 20 total points. He has scored 15 goals in his two years at Willamette.

Hellekson finished with six saves in recording the win for the Bearcats. Thompson earned a total of nine saves for Linfield.

The Wildcats outshot Willamette 18-16 overall, but the Bearcats claimed an 11-8 edge in shots on goal. Kaufman led all players with six shots, including a game-high four shots on goal.

Erik Kaufman scored both goals for Willamette. He ended the year as WU's leading scorer with nine goals and two assists.

Erik Kaufman scored both goals for Willamette. He ended the year as WU's leading scorer with nine goals and two assists.