Defensive struggles in the first half doomed the BME Ballers to drop a 3-5 decision to Bicuspid Futbol in the intramural regular season opener on Tuesday night, January 24.
Last season the BME soccer team was forced to linger on the waiting list for most of the season. However, this season the BME Ballers are playing the full season in the Graduate/Faculty/Staff 2nd Division, plus the playoffs.
The BME Ballers will play every Tuesday at 7:00 PM on the Southwest Fields for the next five weeks. The Ballers next game is next Tuesday, January 31 on field 4 versus the Minesweepers.
This first game saw the BME Ballers’ defense a bit disorganized in the first 10 minutes of the game, allowing three undeserved goals, and forcing several good saves from keeper Hans van Oostrom just to keep the team in the game. The Ballers recovered briefly when Jamal Lewis split the Bicuspid defense with a perfect through ball to Aditya Asokan, who slotted home the first of his two goals to bring the score line to 1-3. The Ballers then created a handful of other scoring opportunities in the first half, with shots by Jamal Lewis, Captain Eric Franca and Joerg Luedicke just missing the mark, but a late first-half injury to Matt Carstens once again destabilized the defense, and the Ballers conceded a fourth goal a minute from half-time.
Even though down 1-4 to begin the second half, the BME defense reorganized itself, and played solidly the second half. Scoring for the second half was opened by Aditya Asokan, when he followed up his shot, and capitalized on a muffed save by the Bicuspid keeper to complete his brace for the game. After that, it was defensive battle on both ends of the field, with both teams creating good chances, only to be thwarted by the opposing defense at the last moment. Jamal Lewis, Wilton Williams and Eric Franca tormented the Bicuspid defense with opportunities in the run of play, and Walter O’Dell’s curling left-footed shot on a free kick was barely deflected past the left post for a Ballers’ corner. Unfotunately, the lone defensive miscue in the second half by the Ballers’ defense led to the fifth Bicuspid goal. However, the Ballers continued to press the attack, and were rewarded two minutes from the final whistle when Tom Cowan was brought down in the box for a penalty. Jamal Lewis stepped forward and cooly slotted home the third goal of the game from the spot for the BME Ballers.
Although the defensive disorganization was troubling, BME did play much better against this team than last season. Last season Bicuspid Futbol defeated BME by mercy rule. Even though this is not the desired start of the season, the team is still very optimistic about its chances as the season progresses.
If you are BME grad student, faculty or staff, and are interested in playing, please contact Eric Franca at firstname.lastname@example.org.