Wade Steinlage, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
DES MOINES – It was voted as last year’s Game of the Year, but the 2019 version might have been even better as the Statesmen men’s soccer team defeated rival Grand View 6-5 in overtime in Heart of America Athletic Conference play Tuesday.
William Penn (6-2, 3-0 Heart) remained perfect in the league, but the victory was not easy to come by. The Vikings (4-4, 1-2 Heart), who tallied a 22-18 edge in shots, pulled out to a quick 2-0 advantage with goals in the fifth and 11th minutes.
Less than four minutes later, the visitors got on the board when Eduardo Bonatto (Sr., Rio Grande, Brazil, Business Management) finished off a pass from Bernardo Lima (Sr., Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Exercise Science). Unfortunately, Grand View made the last noise of the first period to take a 3-1 edge into the break. The hosts outshot WPU 11-3 at intermission.
A different navy and gold crew came out for the latter half, beginning with Kenedy Deviska (So., Pignon, Haiti, Wellness and Recreation) scoring unassisted at the 51:18 mark. Deviska now leads WPU with six goals this fall. Bonatto then found the back of the net at the 53:01 mark, once again hooking up with Lima to knot the score at 3-3.
The squads went cold for nearly 30 minutes, but GVU recaptured the edge in the 78th minute. The Statesmen, who won last year’s matchup 4-3 in overtime, rallied once more, not only tying the game, but managing their first lead of the day.
Moussa Ndiaye (Sr., St. Louis, Mo., Business Management) made it 4-4 at 85:15 (assist to Bonatto) and then just 25 seconds later, Bonatto capped off his first career hat trick with an unassisted score to make it 5-4 in favor of William Penn. Bonatto’s goals tie him with Deviska for the team lead, while Ndiaye’s score is his first of 2019.
Unfortunately, Grand View refused to wave the proverbial white flag and forced overtime with only 86 seconds to go.
The Statesmen did not give away all of the momentum, though, and on its third shot of the first overtime, off a rebounded attempt by Lima, Ethan Martinez (Fr., Kansas City, Kan., Business Management) slotted home the game-winner at the 99:11 mark. The goal is Martinez’s fourth of the season.
Austin Munoz (Sr., Harrisville, Utah, Sports Management) and his counterpart in the Grand View goal both had tough days, but it could have been even worse as the senior tallied seven stops in the victory.
“This was quite possibly the craziest game of soccer you could ever imagine,” Head Coach Jaymee Highcock said. “The first half was not a good performance for us and we gifted them three times with some bad defending. We showed great heart and passion in the second half to get into the lead. Our quality in attack came into play and we scored some great goals.”
“To get a win against your rival is a great feeling, and winning in overtime on the road again shows us that we can dig in and find a way to win at any location,” Highcock added.
Next Up: William Penn travels to Baldwin City, Kan. Saturday to face #9 Baker in Heart action at 7:30 p.m.