The Seattle University Men’s Soccer team has unfortunately finished off their official season for the 2016-2017 school year.
The Redhawks came out with a total of 11 wins, 6 losses and 2 draws for their overall season and stood 7-1-2 in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC). The team had many victories this season, beyond their 11 wins on the field. The Redhawks remain undefeated at home with 16 consecutive wins since September of last year. Many players on the team also received awards and placements on to the First and Second All-WAC teams for 2016.
Senior Kyle Bjornethun was named WAC Defensive Player of the Year. Bjornethun played in eight of 10 WAC games and aided the defensive backline in only allowing 6 goals during WAC play. Others were given spots on the First and Second All- WAC Teams. Those on the First Team include; junior mid-fielder Alex Roldan, sophomore mid-fielder Sergio Rivas and senior defender Kyle Bjornethun. Roldan finished his season fifth on the leaderboard for goals, scoring 8 overall—6 of those goals being game winners. Rivas also ended up snagging a leaderboard spot for shots, finishing with 47 shots over the entire season, taking fourth in the standings.
The team completed the season ranked second in the WAC and was given a first round bye in the WAC Tournament that took place this past weekend. Starting off the tournament, CSU Bakersfield took on Air Force Academy (AFA) on Thursday, Nov. 10, where Air Force defeated CSUB 2 to 0. Air Force proceeded into the Semis on Friday, Nov. 11 for their second game against our Seattle U Redhawks.
Friday’s game ended in a 3-1 loss against Air Force at Utah Valley University, resulting in the Redhawks’ final game of the season. The Air Force Falcons (13-6-1) continued into the WAC Championships and finished second under University of Las Vegas, Nevada (UNLV)—who Seattle U defeated 4-1 at home earlier in the season.
On Friday, the Redhawks started off the game strong and put pressure on the Falcons early. Alex Roldan and junior David Olsen each had a shot on goal within the third minute of the game. Nearing the end of the 15th minute, Kyle Bjornethun skillfully received a corner kick by senior Jeff Rose and executed a header goal, resulting in the first goal of the game—also Bjornethun’s first goal of the season.
Continuing into the first period, the Redhawks kept the Falcons off the board and maintained a strong backline only allowing five opposing shots to be taken. However, in the closing minutes of the half, AFA was issued a free kick where Tucker Axhoj, assisted by teammate Cameron Duley, scored by a strategically placed upper 90 shot.
Seattle University Men’s Soccer fell during the second half but kept elevated spirits and high energy. The Redhawks produced 12 shots during the second period, compared to AFA’s 8. Unfortunately, that did not seem to be enough. Within the opening minutes of the period, occurring from a throw-in into the box, Jaric Marton completed a shot to the far post resulting in Air Force’s second goal of the game.
The Redhawks did not stop fighting, taking 11 more shots during the second half. Junior Isidro Prado- Huerta executed a beautiful shot in the 54th minute, but sadly it intersected the crossbar, resulting in no goal. Both teams had opportunities to score as the half continued on, but the Redhawks did not manage to put another point on the board. AFA’s final, and winning, goal was made in the 65th minute assisted by a pass from the far end, placed into the lower right side of the net.
The disappointing loss so early into the tournament voided the team’s potential to advance into the NCAA Tournament. Despite that, The Redhawks have never gone down without a strong fight.
Going into the 2017 season, Coach Pete Fewing and the team are losing eight talented seniors: Kyle Bjornethun, Jordan Hadden, Jeff Rose, Shane Mahvi, Cameron Rohani, Sam Langston, Patrick Clifford and Joseph Harris. Although the team is saddened by the loss and end to their season, they are already working hard to ensure further improvement and progress for the 2017 season.
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