Pacific Lutheran Rallies Late to Slip Past Bearcats, 2-1

Lutes Remain Undefeated in NWC; Yates Scores Goal for Willamette

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University took an early lead on a goal by Tyler Yates (Fr., Kailua-Kona, HI/Kealakehe HS) at 11:13 and held the lead for most of the game, but Derek Johnson scored two goals for Pacific Lutheran University in the final 11 minutes, as the Lutes rallied past the Bearcats, 2-1, on Sunday, Sept. 23 at Sparks Field.

Pacific Lutheran advanced its record to 5-3-1 overall, while improving to 4-0-0 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette dropped to 3-5-1, including 0-3-1 in the NWC.

Yates scored Willamette's goal at the end of a counter-attack. Erik Kaufman (Sr., F, Portland, OR/Grant HS) took the ball into the attacking third and made a nice pass from the right side into the path of Trevor Jensen (Jr., MF, Chula Vista, CA/Bonita Vista HS), as Jensen made a run in the center of the field.

Jensen made a through pass to Yates, who had only goalkeeper Joe Rayburn to beat, with a PLU defender trailing on the play. Yates tapped the ball to his left, keeping it away from a diving Rayburn, then shot from eight yards into the empty net.

Both teams had several additional offensive chance in the first half, as the Lutes took seven shots and Willamette earned six shot sin the first 45 minutes. Four of PLU's shots were on goal, while the shot by Yates plus two other shots were on target for the Bearcats.

With Willamette leading on the scoreboard, PLU committed numbers forward in the second half. The Lutes achieved eights shots during the half, while WU managed just two shots.

Pacific Lutheran tied the game when Johnson found the net at 79:04. he shot from eight yards out and sent the ball into the bottom right corner of the goal. Tyler Bennett earned an assist after providing a through ball to Johnson, who beat Willamette's defensive trap. The Bearcats closed in on both sides as Johnson took the shot.

Johnson struck again at 85:54 to pull PLU into the lead. The play began with Emmanuel Amarh taking control of the ball on the left wing several yards from the end line. He sent a low crossing pass toward the near post, where Johnson redirected it into the left corner of the net.

Willamette managed one more shot as the Bearcats worked to tie the game. WU received a corner kick that Jensen sent past the far post. Yazan Hishmeh (Fr., F, Ventura, CA/Saint Bonaventure HS) took the shot, which was blocked by the PLU defense with 2:50 remaining in the game.

Johnson led all players with three total shots during the game. All three of his shots were on goal. Overall, the Lutes claimed a 15-8 shooting advantage, including 9-3 in shots on goal. The Lutes finished with a 9-6 edge in corner kicks, although Willamette held a 3-2 margin in the second half.

WU goalkeeper Brayden Calder (Fr., Philomath, OR/Philomath HS) registered six saves for the Bearcats and provided strong play in grabbing crosses and defending the box. WU also benefited from solid play by the back line, which kept PLU's potent offense off the scoreboard for most of the match.

Rayburn made two saves for the Lutes. He caught several passes near the top of the penalty area to prevent attacks by the Bearcats.

Willamette will play two Northwest Conference games at home next weekend. The Bearcats will take on Pacific University on Saturday, Sept. 29 at 2:30 p.m. (PDT). WU will battle George Fox University on Sunday, Sept. 30, also at 2:30 p.m.


Pacific Lutheran University 2
Willamette University 1

Photo gallery
(By Naomi Stukey, Photographer for Willamette Athletics)

Tyler Yates scored his second goal of the season to give Willamette a 1-0 lead in the first half.

Tyler Yates scored his second goal of the season to give Willamette a 1-0 lead in the first half.