Men’s soccer team 1 of 3 winless Summit League teams

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Ashanti Thomas | The Daily Eastern News

Eastern midfielder Chad Hamler (13) races two defenders to the ball in Eastern’s match against Purdue Fort Wayne on Sept. 3 at Lakeside Field. Eastern lost the match 1-0.

Adam Tumino, Sports Editor

The Eastern men’s soccer team is one of three Summit League teams still searching for their first wins this season. 

The Panthers are 0-4 to open the season. Western Illinois is 0-5 and St. Thomas is 0-6.

Among the Summit League teams, St. Thomas has allowed the most goals (13) while Western Illinois is the only team that has not yet scored a goal. 

Leading the standings is Oral Roberts at 5-1. They are one of just two teams in the conference with a record over .500. 

The Golden Eagles are leading the conference in goals with 9 and have allowed 5 goals, the second fewest in the Summit League. 

Only three players have scored multiple goals this season, and two of them are on Oral Roberts. Dante Brigida leads the conference with 4 goals and Reed Berry is tied for second with 2 goals. 

Goalkeeper Miles Motakef is second in the conference with a save percentage of .762 and leads the conference with three shutouts this season.

Denver is the only other team over .500 with a 3-1-1 record so far this season.

The Pioneers have scored 5 goals and allowed 5 goals this season. Stefan DeLeone and Aidan O’Toole are tied for fifth in the Summit League with 9 shots so far this season while Lukas Fisher is tied for the conference lead with 2 assists. 

Kansas City and Omaha both have records of 1-3-1 this season. 

Omaha has allowed the fewest goals in the conference (4), but have only scored twice on offense, leading to their losing record. 

Jeremy Pollardd has played a majority of the time in goal for Omaha and is leading the conference with a .875 save percentage while Hugo Kametani is tied for second in the conference with 6 shots on goal. 

Kansas City has been doubled up by its opponents, allowing 10 goals while scoring 5. 

The Roos’ defense has kept goalkeeper Cooper Clark busy. He has faced 14 more shots than any other Summit League goalie and thus leads the conference with 25 saves. His save percentage is solid, ranking fourth at .714, but his 10 goals allowed still lead the conference. 

Eastern has the most favorable scoring margin of the three winless teams at -1.75 goals per game. The Panthers have scored twice this season, once each in their last two matches, and have allowed 9 goals. 

They held their first lead of the season in their most recent match against Bellarmine, but a pair of late goals from the Knights handed Eastern its fourth-straight loss to open the season. 

Western Illinois has allowed 9 goals as well, but the Leathernecks have yet to score. The lack of scoring is despite the fact that Western Illinois has 54 shots, the third-most in the Summit League. 

St. Thomas is struggling in its first season as a Division I program. The Tommies have allowed 13 goals, 3 more than any other team, while scoring just 2. 

All the Summit League teams have limited nonconference matches left on the schedule with conference play beginning on Sept. 25. 

 

Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]