November 9, 2012
ALMOST TO THE SUMMIT
Leathernecks advance to the final
MACOMB, Ill. - Senior Nathan Bruinsma scored a golden goal to push third-seeded Western Illinois into the Summit League title game, as the Leathernecks defeated second-seeded Kansas City 1-0 in overtime at John MacKenzie Alumni Field on Friday afternoon.
Freshman Maclean Johnson sent a long ball down the right side to junior Drew Edmond, who sent a perfect cross into the box that Bruinsma headed into the corner of the net for the game-winner in the 94th minute.
The Leathernecks improve to 6-8-5 and advance to The Summit League title game on Sunday at noon, where they'll take on top-seeded Oakland at John MacKenzie Alumni Field.
Western is hoping to win its second consecutive Summit League crown and its sixth in the past nine seasons.
UMKC ends its season with a 7-10-2 overall record after finishing the regular season 5-2 in league play.
Bruinsma's goal was his sixth of the season and his third game-winner. Edmond's assist was his third, while Johnson's was his second.
The win marked Western's first victory in a game that went into overtime this season.
Sophomore keeper Yves Dietrich earned his second straight shutout and his fourth of the season, saving all four shots on goal he faced.
Connor Sparrow saved nine of the ten shots on goal he faced for UMKC in the losing effort.
Junior defender Charlie Bales took five shots, three of those on goal. Shots were even at 19-19, while WIU had an 8-1 advantage in corners.
The Leathernecks now turn their focus towards their match against the Golden Grizzlies on Sunday for the conference championship.
"The first thing is probably matching their energy," head coach Dr. Eric Johnson said, regarding the upcoming match against Oakland. "They're a high-energy team, they're really confident, they score goals, we know how they play a little bit and we're a different team now.
"Coming from behind to tie Bradley gave us a little belief that maybe we are in a position to win some games, maybe we can do it," Johnson added about the team's turnaround. "My hat's off to the guys, especially our senior group for being good leaders, to Charlie [Bales] and [senior Aaron] Appel for maintaining our belief we can win, and hopefully that belief is still there