By JACOB NORLING
WESTMONT COLLEGE WRITER
Westmont (1-2) came out swinging against Marymount (1-2) on Friday night, but after seven shots on goal in the first 60 minutes, the Warriors never threatened again as they dropped the men’s soccer match 2-1.
“It is really frustrating for the staff and players to not be able to put away more than one,” said Westmont assistant coach Johnny Whallon, who served as head coach on Friday. “Soccer is a funny game. If you give a team too many chances to stay in the game, sometimes all it takes is one shot from them to make you pay for it.”
Early on, the Warriors threatened heavily. In the first 10 minutes, Westmont recorded three shots including one on goal off of the head of Connor Lynch, but the Mariners were able to fend them off.
In the 13th minute, Mans Ingvarson displayed that he was fully healthy in his first start back from an injury. When Marymount’s Leonel Perez struck a ball with his left foot directly toward the inner-left post, Ingvarson took one step towards his right before sprawling out and swatting the shot out of bounds.
Ingvarson made three saves in the first 20 minutes and seven in total during the match.
In the 23rd minute, Westmont made a rare defensive blunder that led to the Mariners’ first goal. Center back Michael Palmer carried the ball on his own 18 for a few dribbles, and on his third touch, he happened to put too much space between the ball and himself.
After the miss-touch by Palmer, Marymount’s Gianlucca Mazza intercepted the ball and quickly played it to Cade Flanagan. Flanagan and two teammates had only Zach Godeck to get past before having an open shot on Ingvarson. With three men to cover, Godeck was unable to prevent Flanagan from taking a step to his right and firing a shot past Ingvarson for the early lead.
“Of course, Michael was upset,” said Whallon, “but I told him simply that today just wasn’t his day, and that regardless, he’s a key leader for us.”
In the 28th minute, Westmont answered.
After knocking on the door for nearly a half-hour, the club was finally able to get on the board when Connor Lynch played a ball to Braeden Pryor on the far side of the Marymount six-yard box. Pryor received the pass with his back to the goal, before spinning and sneaking a ball past Michael Dairo to knot things up.
Then, in the 35th minute, Godeck blocked a shot a yard outside the Westmont 18 that was ultimately called a handball. On the ensuing set piece, Randy Martinez drilled a shot inside the right post that Ingvarson did not even move for. The perfectly placed shot put Marymount back on top 2-1.
After 45 minutes, Marymount led 2-1 in a game dominated by offense. Between the two, 12 shots on goal took place during the first half.
“We talked all week about chance creations and we got them,” said Whallon. “We had multiple chances to go up early, and after we tied things up, I thought there was a good chance that we could add on. Then the set piece sort of changed the whole tempo of the match, and that’s soccer for you.”
Through the first 20 minutes of the second half, Marymount held Westmont at bay. While Westmont did not let the Mariners record a shot on goal, Marymount had held the Warriors to two non-threatening shots on goal themselves.
As time went on, the Mariners continued to show veteran knowledge, much like Rocky Mountain did against Westmont on Monday. Marymount continuously cleared balls to the other end of the field each time the Warriors crowded the 18, and each time precious seconds continued to tick off the scoreboard.
With under five minutes to play, the Warriors had not had a shot on goal in thirty minutes. With just under three minutes, Westmont had a rare opportunity come-and-go in an instant when Daniel Tuscano played his brother Samuel an over-the-top pass in the six-yard box.
As Tuscano went up for a 50-50 ball with Dairo, the assistant referee motioned that the oncoming Tuscano was offside, and the attack was thwarted.
Jacob Norling is a Westmont College sports information assistant.