The UCA men’s soccer team (8-6-1, 2-1 SBC) finished 1-1 last week after defeating the Memphis Tigers Oct. 22, but losing to Oral Roberts Golden Eagles Oct. 26.
The Bears went on the road and dominated the Tigers 4-1.
Memphis came into the match up ranked as the 23rd best men’s soccer team according to the rating percentage index.
Head coach Ross Duncan told UCASports how getting the lead against a team of this caliber was important for winning the game.
”The fast start made a massive difference in the match because that allowed us to play with a lead. With a good team like Memphis, if they get the first goal then it becomes a lot more difficult. That was so important,” Duncan said.
Just nine minutes after their first goal, the Bears scored again in the 11th minute of the game. Senior forward Niklas Brodacki was able to push the score to 3-0 on an assist from sophomore midfielder Katsuyoshi Kimishima. After shuttiing out Memphis in the first half, the Bears held them to only one goal in the second.
On their end, UCA was able to keep the offense rolling and maintain a sizeable lead on the Tigers. In the 57th minute, junior midfielder Soren Jensen was able to set up sophomore defender Alberto Suarez for a header.
Brodacki’s hat trick against Memphis cemented his name in UCA men’s soccer history. It moved Brodacki to 49 career goals, allowing him to surpass Brett Johnson as the all-time leading scorer for the Bears.
However, UCA wasn’t able to build on this mometum in the next contest. Their four-game winning streak was snapped after a 3-1 loss to Oral Roberts University at UCA’s Bill Stephen’s Track/Soccer Complex.
To start the game, Oral Roberts dominated time of possession and were able to score within the 13th minute of the game. The Bears were able to counter this with a goal of their own from junior midfielder Soren Jensen, assisted by junior forward Kasper Andersen.
Jensen saw a breakdown in Oral Robert’s coverage and was able to get the ball to Kasper to help take advantage of it.
“It was a very good target play from Niklas Brodacki that sent me through on the right wing. I looked up and my teammates were running in between their centre backs. It was a good combination play and then we broke them down easily,” Andersen said.
In the 67th minute, Oral Roberts was able to regain the lead when the Bears mistakenly scored on their own goal. After that unfortunate play, Oral Roberts was able to score again and built a 3-1 lead.
UCA has two conference games left in the season before the conference tournament begins. For their next game, the Bears will travel to Atlanta, Georgia to take on Georgia State. Even though Georgia State is 4-1 at home, they are only 1-2 in conference play.