September 22, 2012
TIED AT THE SUMMIT
Leathernecks-Omaha draw in league opener
MACOMB, Ill. - Senior Nathan Bruinsma scored in the first half to lift Western Illinois to a 1-1 tie against Omaha in the Summit League opener at John MacKenzie Alumni Field on Saturday afternoon.
The Fighting Leathernecks pick up a point in the conference standings, moving to 2-4-2 overall and 0-0-1 in the Summit League, while the Mavericks are now 2-4-1 overall and also 0-0-1 in the league.
"We got a point out of it, so that's a start," Western Illinois head coach Dr. Eric Johnson said. "We scored a goal and we hadn't scored in a couple games, so [that was] two positives right off the bat."
Omaha opened up the scoring in the 16th minute, when Felipe Da Silva scored his first goal of the season on a Giovanni Giattino corner kick.
Western Illinois answered back less than seven minutes later. Junior Charlie Bales sent a corner kick into the box, which freshman Austin Gochneaur chested to Bruinsma, who sent a close-range shot into the back of the net for his first goal of the year. The assists were Bales' second and Gochneaur's first of 2012.
Omaha took 18 shots compared to 13 for Western Illinois, while corner kicks were even at 8-8.
Sophomore keeper Yves Dietrich was solid in goal, saving five of the six shots on goal he faced. Matt Grosey made one save for the Mavericks, a diving effort in overtime that stopped what would have been Bruinsma's second goal of the game.
"Omaha really came with a good scheme and put us under tremendous pressure at times," Johnson added. "We got a little bit better today and we just need to prepare for Oakland now."
Western Illinois will take on Northern Kentucky in a nonconference game on Tuesday at 5 p.m. before traveling to Oakland for a Summit League contest on Saturday.