Men's Soccer Looks to Bounce Back at Home

Men's Soccer Looks to Bounce Back at Home

by Andrew Goodwin, Sports Information Assistant

SPOKANE, Wash. – After a winless trip to Tacoma, Whitworth men's soccer is looking for a get-right weekend at home against Willamette and Linfield.

The Pirates open the weekend facing off with the Bearcats on Saturday and finish it off against the Wildcats on Sunday. Both matches will take place on the Whitworth Soccer Field at 2:30 p.m.

The Whitworth men's soccer schedule will have live links to this weekend's matches.

The Pirates: Whitworth (3-5-1, 1-2-1 NWC) returns home after a difficult weekend. The Pirates dueled to a 1-1 tie against Pacific Lutheran last Saturday before dropping Sunday's match 4-1 to Puget Sound. 

Micah Weller and Jonah Snyder both scored this weekend for the Pirates. Weller's 15-yard shot opened the scoring against Pacific Lutheran, and Snyder's free-kick brought Whitworth within two goals at Puget Sound. 

How May We Assist You: Austin Cassity's excellent start to the season includes a spot at the top of the conference leaderboard in assists. His five assists are also the 26th-most nationally. As a team, Whitworth leads the Northwest Conference with 14 assists. Three Pirates (Cassity, Snyder, and Eric Espinoza) are top-five on the conference's assist leaderboard. 

Chasing History: The Pirates are looking to make history this season. The men's soccer program has never won four consecutive Northwest Conference championships, and after titles in 2014, 2015, and 2016 this season's Pirates have a chance to be the first to win four straight.

The Bearcats: Willamette (5-3, 4-0 NWC) is one of the hottest teams in the Northwest Conference, having won five straight matches entering their showdown with Whitworth.

The Bearcats are paced by forward Alan Hernandez whose three assists are second to just Cassity in the Northwest Conference. They've also been aided by strong goalkeeping from Marco Gonzalez-Yanez, who leads the conference in shutouts and is second in save percentage.

Last season, the Pirates got the better of the Bearcats in both of their matchups, winning 2-1 at home and 1-0 (2OT) in Salem. Moi Diaz and Kyle Morris scored the Pirates' goals.

The Wildcats: Linfield (2-6, 0-4 NWC) comes in to the weekend on a five-match losing streak after starting their season with two wins in three matches.

The Wildcats struggle on defense, having allowed one goal or less only once this season. Offensively, the Wildcats look to Ryan Kister, who is second in the Northwest Conference in goals with five.

Whitworth took both of last season's matches by 1-0 scores. Snyder scored both of the Pirates' goals against Linfield.

Looking Ahead: After taking on Willamette and Linfield, Whitworth plays only one match next week. The Pirates square off against Whitman on Saturday, Oct. 7 at 2:30 p.m.