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Northeast soccer swept by Iowa Lakes

September 19, 2018

No matter how hard Northeast Community College tried, it couldn’t convert opportunities in suffering a doubleheader sweep Tuesday afternoon.

The losses came at the hands of Iowa Lakes Community College in Iowa Community College Athletic Conference soccer action at Memorial Field. The women’s team suffered a 2-1 defeat, while the men fell 3-1.

“We had some good opportunities,” Northeast coach Chad Miller said about the men’s match. “You have to take advantage of those.”

All three goals by the Lakers came from the middle of the field — an area Miller said the Hawks have had a tough place playing defense.

“The biggest thing is defending the middle,” Miller said. “We’re willing to go outside and defend the corners, but we don’t defend the middle, and that’s the only place you can get goals is pretty much in the center of the field.”

Northeast trailed 2-0 after an Iowa Lakes goal less than seven minutes into the second half, but the Hawks halved the gap in the 80th minute when Arthur Lopez scored off a free kick after he was fouled from behind.

“We’ve been getting it to our center forwards, who then can make something happen out of it,” Miller said. “Basically, the key there is getting to the ball first. He did, got fouled, got the opportunity for the (free kick). We’ve been trying to do that all day, but what’s failing us was not getting a shot off of it. We’re receiving the ball there, but then we turn or play it back rather than turning to get a shot.”

The Hawks had a golden chance to equalize the match with just over two minutes left, but a shot sailed just awry. The Lakers then answered in the 88th minute with an insurance goal by Luan Cesar, who converted a second-chance opportunity against Northeast keeper Massimiliano Simonazzi for his second goal of the match.

Simonazzi finished with 14 keeper saves. Iowa Lakes outshot Northeast 24-16, including a 17-6 advantage on goal.

Cesar got things started when he emerged from a scrum following a header by Luto Tom, and Cesar punched in the match’s first goal in the 17th minute. It held up for a 1-0 halftime lead for the Lakers.

IN THE WOMEN’S match, Northeast’s one goal came off a Mandy Stricker penalty kick off a handball call against Iowa Lakes.

“I thought we played well. I thought we possessed the ball,” Miller said. “Our issue all year has been scoring goals. Our forwards have yet to get a goal. All of our goals have been scored by our midfield. It’s tough to win games in this conference when your forwards can’t score.”

It was another case of missed chances for the Hawks. Northeast outshot Iowa Lakes 15-7, including a 9-4 advantage in attempts on goal.

“I think half of those (shots) were on goal, and we just didn’t put them away,” he said. “We’re not very composed in front of the net.”

Women’s match

Iowa Lakes 2 0 — 2

Northeast 1 0 — 1

Goal: (NECC) Mandy Stricker. Saves: (NECC) Alexis Wemhoff 1, Lizzy McCalla 1.

Men’s match

Iowa Lakes 1 2 — 3

Northeast 0 1 — 1

Goal: (NECC) Arthur Lopez. Saves: (NECC) Massimiliano Simonazzi 14.

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