The NIU men’s soccer team fell 2-0 Wednesday night to 24th-ranked Northwestern the NIU Soccer Complex.
Eric Weberman scored in the 43rd minute and Sam Forsgren netted in the 80th to lift the visitors to the victory.
“(Northwestern) doesn’t give away a lot (of chances), but I thought we did alright to create a lot,” said NIU head coach Eric Luzzi. “Once again, there were two moments. We had two or three chances just as good as their chances, and we didn’t finish them. They had two chances and put them away, the other 95 percent of the game there was not a lot of difference between the two teams.”
Junior Bertrand Gaschot (Austin, Texas/Westwood) had the first shot that tested either goalkeeper when he forced a save from Northwestern’s Tyler Miller in the 22nd minute.
Just a minute later, the Wildcats created an excellent chance. A cross in from the right wing found Forsgren inside the six-yard box, but his first-time effort was fired high of the crossbar.
Northwestern (6-1-4) opened the scoring in the 43rd minute on a goal by Weberman. Connor Holloway played a through ball to Weberman and his shot from outside of the box found the upper corner past NIU junior goalkeeper Andrew Glaeser (Walla Walla, Wash./Walla Walla/Oregon State) to give the Wildcats a 1-0 advantage.
In the first minute of the second half, the Wildcats looked to double the lead as Elo Ozumba fired a shot that went wide across the face of the goal.
NIU (2-5-4) had an outstanding chance in the 51st minute as freshman Len Heinson (Wuppertal, Germany/Carl-Fuhlrott Gymnasium) hit a powerful shot from near the top of the box. Miller could only parry the shot right back in front of goal but the Wildcats were able to scramble the rebound away for a Huskie corner kick.
In the 66th minute, Miller again denied the Huskies a tying goal. Senior Andrew Palumbo (Ft. Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot/Darton College) worked down the wing before cutting back inside for a shot toward the back post, but Miller palmed the shot away as the Wildcats conceded a corner but kept maintained the 1-0 advantage.
With NIU seeing much more of the ball, Northwestern doubled its lead against the run of play in the 80th minute. Elo Ozumba possessed the ball in the corner for the Wildcats before passing to Forsgren who worked his way along the end line and created just enough of an angle to shoot high into the net past Glaeser and give Northwestern a 2-0 lead.
The Huskies will return to action on Saturday night, Oct. 11, when they open Mid-American Conference play against West Virginia. Game time against the Mountaineers is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
For more information on NIU men’s soccer and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.