By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Whitworth University scored the game's only goal with 2:50 left in the second overtime on a shot by Kyle Morris from behind the midfield stripe, as the Pirates defeated Willamette University, 1-0, on Sunday, Oct. 30 at Sparks Field. The shot was taken following a short restart by Whitworth goalkeeper Tony Watters.
On the play, Willamette's defenders moved forward to bring Whitworth's attackers offside. Morris' shot bounced just over the arms of Bearcat goalkeeper Josh Fuentes near the top of the penalty area and went into the net.
The Pirates improved to 12-3-2 overall, 10-1-2 in the NWC. Willamette fell to 8-7-1, 6-6-1 in the NWC.
Whitworth played with 10 men for the final 27:38 of regulation and in both overtimes after Aaron Yanagi was ejected for receiving his second yellow card of the game.
Both teams played well in a mostly tactical contest with strong defensive play. Even so, each team created some offensive chances, although no one found the net until the game-winning play.
The Bearcats ended the afternoon with a 13-10 edge in total shots, while Whitworth gained a 5-4 advantage in shots on goal. Willamette claimed a 7-4 margin in corner kicks.
Fuentes and Whitworth starting goalkeeper Timmy Costa each responded with four saves in goal. Costa recorded all four of his saves in the first half, before giving way to Watters at the start of the second half. Fuentes made two saves in the first half and two in the second half. Watters did not earn a save.
Diego Ochoa (So., F, Coronado, CA/Coronado HS) had perhaps the best opportunity of the first half. His well-struck shot from 23 yards on the right side was saved by Costa at 21:04.
Jack Elton (Sr., D, Corte Madera, CA/Redwood HS) placed two shots on goal for Willamette in the first half. He forced Costa to register saves at 28:28 and again at 37:18 when Elton's corner kick nearly reached the upper left corner of the net.
In the second half, Fuentes stopped a shot by Zanskar Blair that was similar to the shot by Ochoa in the first half. Late in regulation, Fuentes denied a 25-yard shot by Moi Diaz at 89:21.
Willamette took two shots in the first overtime. Maxwell McKee (So., F, Coronado, CA/Coronado HS) earned the first shot at 94:42, but it was blocked by a defender. Elton's shot a couple of minutes later at 96:50 also was blocked by the Pirates.
The Bearcats will complete their season on Saturday, Nov. 5 with a home game against archrival Linfield College. Kickoff at Sparks Field is set for 1:30 p.m. (PDT).