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Lutes NWC Home Opener Spoiled by Whitman, 3-1

Lutes NWC Home Opener Spoiled by Whitman, 3-1

Written by Student Assistant Jake Bilyeu

TACOMA, Wash. – The Pacific Lutheran University men's soccer team opened its first home Northwest Conference weekend with a tough setback to Whitman College, falling 3-1 after yielding a pair of second half goals on Saturday at East Field.

Whitman (6-3, 2-1 NWC) scored first when Eric Conte pushed past the defense to score in the 37th minute.  But just when it looked like Whitman would enter the half with momentum, PLU's Eddie Na beat the defense to answer with his sixth goal of the season to even things up in the 43rd minute.

Unfortunately for the Lutes (4-4-1, 1-2 NWC), Whitman put together an impressive early run in the second half to regain the lead, as Jacob Fritz added to his earlier assist with a goal in the 48th minute to put WC up 2-1.  The Lutes tried to respond, but Whitman added to the lead when Ben Freedman found the back of the net in the 60th minute.  The Lutes put together some impressive attacks from then on, but none of them were capped off as Whitman prevailed 3-1.

"I didn't think we played poorly," head coach John Yorke said.  "We played alright, and only gave up four shots on goal, but they scored on three of them and we did not have enough emotion or desire to come back from that.

Three goalies saw action today for the Lutes. Jack Rose played the first half giving up just one goal, while Tanner Premo allowed two goals in the second half and was followed up by Cole Weaver.

The Lutes can salvage a weekend split on Sunday, hosting Whitworth University. The last time the Lutes hosted the Pirates, PLU tallied the 2-0 victory.

"Before tomorrow we need to have a long look at ourselves," Yorke said.  "We need to decide if we are passionate enough to be disciplined and do the right things that it takes to win games."