The Valparaiso University men’s soccer team went into Des Moines, Iowa and earned three points in the standings on Wednesday evening, erasing an early deficit to beat host Drake 3-1 in Missouri Valley Conference play. Valpo featured three different goal scorers, while senior Adan Garcia (Dallas, Texas / Episcopal School of Dallas) became the second player in program history to turn in a three-assist evening.
How It Happened
- Valpo played from behind early when Leroy Enzugusi took a beautiful through ball from Nate Seaberg and created a one-on-one with the keeper. The talented Drake striker finished from 20 yards out, squirting one past a diving Edvin Holst (Stockholm, Sweden / Viktor Ryberg Gynasmisum Jaraplan). That made it 1-0 Drake at the 21-minute mark.
- Mason Marcey (Charlotte, N.C. / Charlotte Christian [Radford]) broke up a Drake pass in the Valpo attacking third in the 37th minute, helping Valpo gain possession. He shoveled it to Garcia, whose one-touch pass set up Andy Lomeli (Dyer, Ind. / Lake Central). The Valpo freshman maneuvered around a defender and finished lower right from 15 yards out to tie the game at one.
- In the final minute of the first half, Marcey took a pass from Garcia and angled one past Drake keeper Luke Anderson from the far left corner of the 18-yard box, finishing middle right to send Valpo into the locker room with a 2-1 edge.
- Drake (7-7-0, 4-4-0 MVC) had the first three shots of the second half, but none found the net. Valpo survived a close call when Drake’s effort to equalize by Austin Smythe clanked off the left post.
- Shortly after Smythe’s near miss, fifth-year senior captain Demar Rose (Kingston, Jamaica, / Wolmer’s Boys School) provided some breathing room for the visiting team. Rose converted on a point-blank chance inside the box created by a nifty Garcia cross.
- Drake had a player sent off with a second yellow with 17:41 remaining in the second half, allowing Valpo to play 11-on-10 for the match’s duration.
Inside the Game
- Garcia became just the second player in program history to enjoy a three-assist match. He was the first to do so since Sept. 11, 1985, when Thomas Froats had three assists against Saint Francis (Ind.). The Valpo senior became the 20th player in the nation and the first in the Missouri Valley Conference with a three-assist game this season.
- In addition, Garcia cracked the program record book in career assists by upping his total to 11. He now owns sole possession of 10th in program history and is the first Valpo player with a double-figure assist total since Adrian Ortiz finished his collegiate tenure with 13 in 2010.
- Lomeli’s goal was the second of his rookie campaign. He found the back of the net for the first time since his home debut on Sept. 2 against IU Northwest.
- Marcey posted his fourth goal of the season and the fifth of his career. He became the eighth player in the Missouri Valley Conference with four or more goals this season and the first member of the Brown & Gold to hit that mark this year.
- Marcey had a three-point night, also notching his second assist of 2019.
- Rose cracked the goal column for the first time this season and the third time in his career. He last scored on Oct. 27, 2018, a dazzling equalizer in a 1-1 draw at Evansville.
- The three-goal output was Valpo’s most prosperous since scoring eight times in a game against IU Northwest on Sept. 2. The last time Valpo had a three-goal showing in conference play was back on Sept. 16, 2017, also at Drake, a 3-2 overtime victory.
- This was Valpo’s ninth away match of the season and none have come against teams that entered the matchup with a sub-.500 record.
- Both of Valpo’s Missouri Valley Conference wins have come when the opponent scored the first goal. The team also came from behind in the 2-1 win over Evansville on Sept. 22.
- Valpo improved its record to 3-5-1 all-time against Drake by avenging a 2-0 home loss from earlier in the season.
- Head coach Mike Avery recorded the 90th victory of his time guiding the program. He is already the winningest coach in program history.
- Valpo was credited with four total shots in the game, all of them on goal. The team was outshot 14-4, but the Brown & Gold made the most of their chances, converting three of those four opportunities.
Thoughts from Head Coach Mike Avery
“This was a really gutsy performance tonight in tough, windy and cold conditions and against a talented Drake side. I thought we did well to adjust to their shape, which was different than the first time we played them, and once the boys made some adjustments, we were able to get some decent pressure to Drake. All three goals came from our ability to win the ball in their half and take advantage of some counter spaces.”
“I’ve been saying all week that if we are going to have any influence on the league race, Adan Garcia, Demar Rose and Mason Marcey are going to have to lead us. All three were influential tonight in the game, and they spurred on some very good performances from the entire group.”
“We will now focus on managing the travel and the quick turnaround for Sunday’s game. We are very eager to get back to Peoria and face Bradley.”
Valpo (3-9-1, 2-4 MVC) will round out a stretch of five straight on the road on Sunday at 1 p.m. CT at Bradley. Please note that the match on Sunday will take place in Peoria, a change from the original schedule. The fixture will be broadcast on ESPN3 with links to live video, audio and stats available on ValpoAthletics.com.