Aug. 24, 2014
CHICAGO – The UIC men’s soccer team fell to Bradley, 3-1, in its final exhibition match on Sunday at Flames Field. Junior Jorge Alvarez scored for the Flames in the 24th minute off a pass from redshirt-senior Michael Stankiewicz, but the Braves came up with three goals in the final 17 minutes to take the win.
"Obviously, a loss is a loss, but the thing about the preseason is that on Friday, everybody is 0-0-0," head coach Sean Phillips said. "There were 73 minutes of pretty positive play. Credit to Bradley, they kept pushing, which is one of the reasons why they have been a very successful program over the last several years.”
UIC came out in the first half and pressured the Bradley defense, putting up eight shots with five on goal. It was in the 24th minute that the Flames were awarded for their efforts as Alvarez scored from Stankiewicz to take the 1-0 lead, which they held onto for 50 minutes of play.
The Braves were limited to four shots in the first but they came out in the second and made nine attempts, with UIC taking another eight shots. With 16:15 left to play, Andrew Brown scored the equalizer off a pass from Jason Lesch. After keeping the match at 1-1, Bradley scored two late goals off passes from Christian Okeke, with Cody Lofgren scoring in the 87th minute and Joe Morales netting the last goal in the final minute of play.
“We weren't able to manage the game in the last 15 minutes and that is something we have to address as a staff, but some of the mistakes are very correctable."
Sophomore Andrew Putna played all 90 minutes in goal for the Flames for the second-straight match, making four saves on the Braves’ seven shots on goal. The Braves’ Shay Niemeyer and Logan Ketterer split time in net and combined for nine saves against UIC.
"We need to find a way to prevent a few plays and to make a few plays before Friday, but the preseason has been good as a whole. We have learned a lot about players, today and in the last two games, and I think we'll be able to put our players out and shorten the bench a little bit."
The Flames will now prepare for its regular-season opener on Friday, when it hosts Cal State Fullerton in its first of three-straight matches at Flames Field at 7:30 p.m. CT.