Men’s soccer ties Weber State to end season

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    By Joseph Evans

    Disappointed.

    That was the feeling that resonated from the BYU men”s soccer team as they finished the regular season undefeated with a 1-1 tie to Weber State, Friday, Oct. 25.

    “A tie at home feels like a loss,” head coach Chris Watkins said.

    Playing for more than 1,000 enthusiastic fans and a national audience on KBYU-TV, the seniors wanted to finish the season with a victory.

    “A week of lackluster practice led to a lackluster game,” said senior forward Brandon Leroy. “Now we know how to prepare for nationals next month.”

    The team finished the season with a 7-0-1 record, but the tie feels like a blemish for the defending national champions.

    The Cougars looked poised to win by not allowing Weber State to take their first shot until 20 minutes into the first half.

    Sophomore midfielder Gilbert Gaertner scored 30 minutes into the first half to take a 1-0 lead into the break. Gaertner placed a perfectly positioned kick into the goal from the right side of the penatly box from a nice feed from junior midfielder Chad Deshler.

    Curt Whitesides of Weber State had a busy second half. He picked up a yellow card with 25 minutes remaining in regulation. Three minutes later he scored to tie the game at 1-1. One minute after his game-tying goal, Whitesides found himself ejected from the game with his second yellow card.

    Even with a 11-10 player advantage, the Cougars were unable to break the tie as the teams went into overtime.

    In the first overtime, neither team was able to get a good look at the goal as Weber State stacked the box on defense.

    BYU had some looks in the second overtime including a heroic effort by junior forward Brad Peterson with two minutes left. Peterson saw his first action of the season after sitting out due to injury.

    “It felt great to be back on the field,” Peterson said.

    The Cougars look to defend their national championship in Bakersfield, Calif. from Nov. 22-25.

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