Cougars men win soccer playoff opener
The Cougars live to fight another day.
St. Xavier University’s men’s soccer team entered the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference playoffs on something of a low ebb after losing its regular-season finale to Robert Morris University, but there was no evidence of a letdown on Saturday. That’s when the Cougars used a 4-2 advantage during the penalty-kick shootout phase to advance past Judson University and into the semifinal round of the CCAC Tournament.
SXU (7-9-2, 6-4-1) traveled to Bourbonnais this past Wednesday to face No. 2-seeded Olivet Nazarene University.
Officially, the Cougars’ match with Judson was recorded as a 2-2 tie after two overtime periods failed to produce a winner. Junior Brandon Simoes, sophomore Marco Gutierrez, junior Rene Leon and junior Tom Lojek all converted penalty kicks for SXU.
Leon’s unassisted tally with under two minutes remaining in regulation created the need for extra sessions. Lojek’s free kick in the 64th minute accounted for the Cougars’ other early marker.
Juniors Bruno Oliveira and Michael Berrequin scored for the Tigers during regulation. Olivet was ahead 2-0 after less than 50 minutes had expired, but could do no further damage against SXU senior netminder Kyle Held (seven saves) until tallying a couple times on penalty kicks.