Men’s soccer falls in home opener

Aidan Wall dribbles the ball.
Aidan Wall (photo by Larry Newman)

ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University men's soccer team fell 2-1 to the visiting Whitworth University Pirates in its 2019 home opener earlier this evening. Despite out-shooting Whitworth 13-6, sophomore Aidan Wall was the long Panther to find the back of the net.

The Pirates struck in the 29th minute when sophomore Drew Wilson fired a shot from inside the six yard box past Chapman goalkeeper Chandler Siemonsma. Whitworth senior Chase Reidt placed a low driven cross into the 18-yard box when fellow classmate Britton Clifford got a heel on it to send it to the left side of the 6-yard box. Wilson was able to fire a one-touch shot into the net to give the Pirates a 1-0 lead.

The Panthers rattled off three more shots in the remaining 15 minutes of the first half but were unable to capitalize in the first 45 minutes of play.

Wall netted the equalizer just over 20 minutes into the second half of play when senior Connor McLane earned a free kick on the edge of the 18-yard box. Wall hit the ball perfectly, bending it around the wall and grazing it off the bottom of the crossbar and into the goal, bringing the Panthers back even with the Pirates.

With under four minutes to play in the match and both teams fighting for the lead, Whitworth junior DeVonte Graham gathered a loose ball in the 6-yard box and found the back of the net, giving the Pirates a 2-1 edge.

Chapman pushed hard in the last five minutes of play, earning three corner kicks and a penalty kick. Sophomore Tobi Howe stepped up to take the penalty, but Pirates goalkeeper Jesus Nunes just barely got a touch on the ball with his outstretched arm, preserving the lead for Whitworth with under one minute left to play.

Howe fired off three shots on goal, forcing Nunes to make three of his five saves of the game. Seniors Jarod Matteoni and Patrick Quinn anchored the back line, playing all 90 minutes of the match.

The Panthers return home on Sunday, Sept. 1 to host Pacific University at 1 p.m.

by Katie Bell
Sports Information Assistant

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