CHICAGO – For the fourth year in-a-row, the University of Chicago men's soccer team clinched the University Athletic Association (UAA) title thanks to a 1-0 home victory against Case Western Reserve University on Friday night.
The No. 6-ranked Maroons improved their overall record to 9-1-5 and now stand at 5-0 in the UAA. UChicago is two games up on second-place New York University (3-2) with two games remaining. With the head-to-head result on their side, the Maroons are slated to receive the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA postseason. One more victory or tie will secure the UAA championship outright.
In the early going Friday, the visiting Spartans (6-6-4 overall, 0-3-2 UAA) were the ones controlling the action. CWRU came out aggressive from the opening whistle, challenging every ball and trying to force mistakes as UChicago built up from the back through the defense and midfield. The trend continued for about 15 minutes until the Maroons adapted to the tactic and began to find ways around the tight coverage.
The Spartans put up their best opportunity to score in the 17th minute with a laser strike that slammed off the near post. All told, CWRU held a 9-3 shot advantage in the first half. However, it was UChicago who came into the break with the lead. A corner kick led to a scrum in front of the goal, which was ultimately resolved by junior defender Scott Lich putting the ball into the back of the net at the 30:01 mark.
Another bright spot for UChicago was the play of first-year forward Kameron Bloye. The rookie was the most dangerous attacker throughout the evening contest with a bevy of runs at goal that featured technical footwork and slippery moves. He also delivered a number of quality corner kicks and free kicks. His closest call came in the 54th minute when he banged a shot against the far post, with the rebound coming right back onto the field.
The Maroons controlled possession for the great majority of the second half, and once again, they proved impassable on defense. Junior goalkeeper Aaron Katsimpalis notched his eighth shutout of the year, making three saves in the process.
The Spartans led the shot total 12-11 by game's end, while the Maroons had an 8-6 edge in corner kicks.
- Sunday, Nov. 3 @ 1:00 PM – Carnegie Mellon University at UChicago