MITCHELL, S.D. – The Dakota Wesleyan University men’s soccer team kicked off the 2012 season with a three-game road trip to the southwest portion of the United State over Labor Day weekend.
The Tigers took on Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth, Texas; Oklahoma City University in Oklahoma City, Okla., and Friends University in Wichita, Kan. Dakota Wesleyan returned to Mitchell with an 0-3 nonconference mark to start the year after dropping all three games.
DWU started the road tip Friday, Aug. 31, against Texas Wesleyan. TWU scored two first-half goals, but Tiger senior Hugo Gonzalez got Dakota Wesleyan within one just over two minutes into the second half when he scored an unassisted goal. Texas Wesleyan responded with two more unanswered goals, however, to pull away for a 4-1 win.
DWU had nine shots to Texas Wesleyan’s 13, and TWU held a 6-3 edge in shots on goal. Tiger sophomore goalie Alex Ek made two saves.
Sunday afternoon, the Tigers came up against another tough opponent in Oklahoma City, and OCU came away with a 4-0 victory. Oklahoma City had an 11-3 edge in shots on goal and a 23-9 advantage in total shots. Gonzalez put up four shots for DWU, including two on goal. Freshman goalie Manny Paravalos made seven saves.
Monday afternoon the Tigers played a close game with Friends, lost 2-1 despite a late goal. Friends scored once in the first half and once 10 minutes into the second half, and Dakota Wesleyan got within one with just under six minutes left in the game when Trent Robbins scored his first goal of the year. It wasn’t enough, however, and Friends held on for the win.
DWU had eight shots on goal and 13 total shots. Freshman Alex Nelson made eight saves in goal for the Tigers.
Dakota Wesleyan is back on the road this Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 8-9, when it travels to Jamestown, N.D. Saturday, the Tigers take on North Central University at 2 p.m., and Sunday DWU plays Jamestown College at 2 p.m. DWU’s first home game is Sept. 22 against rival Hastings College.