By: Ryan Gasser, sports information director
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Capital University Men's Soccer has advanced to the OAC Tournament Semifinals with a 2-0 victory over the Heidelberg Student Princes on Tuesday night. Capital's Chewy Gordon continued his hot streak of play with two goals in the Crusaders' win over the Students Princes at Bernlohr Stadium. They will now play John Carroll University in University Heights on Thursday, Nov. 2.
Capital (12-6-1) entered the tournament as the number three seed for the second year in a row and drew sixth-seeded Heidelberg (11-5-1) as its first-round opponent just six days after defeating the Students, 3-2, in the regular season. While the first half did not feature a goal, the pitch warmed up with a pair of Capital scores, each tallied by junior forward Chewy Gordon (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville Central).
Both teams came out of the first half unscathed though Heidelberg displayed its offense in larger numbers. Though they outshot Capital, 8-5, each team put forth one quality scoring opportunity. The Berg's came first when 13 minutes in Rodrigo Meza took his second of three shots in a 15-minute block of time, however, it sailed wide left of the goal.
Capital put five shots toward the Heidelberg cage in the first half, though only two fell on frame. The final of those two came just as the final seconds were ticking off the clock in the first half when the ball was played in to the near post and senior defenseman Dominic Zumpone (Sunbury, Ohio/Big Walnut) put a head on it, but Berg goalkeeper Jake Kress was there to make the stop, taking both teams into the half scoreless.
Much of the first five minutes of the second half was spent in the Capital defensive end, but Capital began applying heat on a chilly night in Columbus with two quality scoring chances just after the 50-minute mark. Jamie Robson and Zumpone both rocketed shots toward The Berg's goal, but each sailed wide and left the Capital fans wanting more. They soon were rewarded for their patience.
Capital added a third scoring chance that came up short with 31:45 remaining on the clock when Gordon found himself in front of the net and with little contention but his header among a heap of converging players was saved by Kress. That served as the prelude to a pair of goals that gave Capital a lead and put the game out of reach, all within a four-minute timespan.
Gordon's first goal came as part of a lob pass from the near side of the field. After sophomore Tristan Bentley (Cincinnati, Ohio/Archibishop McNicholas) played it in, Gordon left his defender to retrieve the pass. Once setting it down, Gordon turned and ripped a shot past Kress for the match's first goal. The goal came in the 63rd minute, and was not his last.
It did not take long for Gordon to strike again. The play was set up by a shot taken by Tyler Wujczyk, which was knocked down from 10 yards out. Wujczyk then hustled to keep the loose ball in play on the end line and flicked it back out in front of the goal where Gordon was waiting, unmarked. Gordon took advantage of the one-on-one chance with Kress and for the second time got the best of the Heidelberg keeper with a header that beat him to the far post.
The Capital defense allowed just two Heidelberg shot attempts following Gordon's second goal, and Capital senior Justin Niswonger (Centerville, Ohio/Centerville) continued to keep the sheet clean. His last of three saves came with 4:40 to go in the match, solidifying his seventh shutout of the season.
Gordon now has 11 goals on the season with his two scored on Tuesday night. It marked his fourth multi-goal match of the season and the second straight two-goal performance after posting two versus Baldwin Wallace University in the regular season finale.
Capital is now slated to play No. 2 John Carroll University on Thursday night at Don Shula Stadium with a 7 p.m. kickoff. The winner of that matchup will face off against the winner of No. 1 Otterbein University and No. 5 Marietta College on Saturday, Nov. 4.