Blue Devils have to settle for tie against Crossroads

Published 7:09 pm Monday, October 5, 2009

The Blue Devils men’s soccer team almost had its first win in Austin Monday.

But they had to settle for a 4-4 tie with Crossroads College at Larry Gilbertson Track and Field.

RCC’s last second attempt to win the match just missed, when Jake Allen Thompson of Albert Lea had a 25-yard free kick bounce off Knights goal keeper Aaron Miller’s hands before it deflected off the top of the post with five seconds left in the match.

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The Knights scored twice in the last 10 minutes to force the tie.

Kyle Skipton scored after RCC’s goal keeper lost his footing and fell in the 80th minute and Jeremy Chesky knocked in a penalty kick in the 89th minute to tie it up.

“That’s part of the game and you don’t give up in a 90-minute game,” RCC head coach Soner Dogan said of his team’s late miscues. “If you want a good team, you have to be focused and play with intensity from the first minute until the referee blows the whistle.”

The Blue Devils (1-6-2 overall) trailed 2-1 at the half, but rallied for three straight goals over a five minute stretch in the second half. Jovanny Santibanez, a freshman from Houston, Tex., scored in the 61st, 65th, and 66th minute to keep his team in it.

“I really wanted to win and we really wanted to beat these guys,” said Santibanez, who has seven goals on the season. “The last 10 minutes were frustrating and we had a couple of mistakes, but that happens.”

The Blue Devils couldn’t hold on to their lead, and they have now tied the Knights twice this season, while getting one win.

“We made a nice comeback, but I knew it wasn’t over at 4-2,” Dogan said. “I kept telling them to stay heads up. But these guys are young and the general psychology is to think you have the game when you have a two goal lead.”

Despite the loss, Santibanez is pleased with how the Blue Devils have improved this season.

“We’re getting way better,” he said. “Everybody’s improving a lot defensively and offensively.”

RCC scored the match’s first goal when Gabriel Sanchez scored in the 19th minute. The Knights got their first two goals from Skipton and Corey Anderson.

The Blue Devils out-shot Crossroads College 21-17.