Franciscan University’s men’s soccer team suffered their first conference loss on Saturday in a tough match against rival Penn State Behrend.
Although the Barons were disappointed with the loss, Head Coach Christian Bobak kept a positive attitude, saying, “We’ve got to keep our head up. I mean, this is our first loss in conference so with that perspective, we’re still doing really well.”
Penn State Behrend started the game aggressively, scoring a goal off a header within the first five minutes. However, the Barons refused to let the early goal shake their confidence.
According to team captain Joseph Duran, “We just kept thinking ‘next play, next play’ because that’s really the only thing you have control over.”
Then with fifteen minutes left in the first half, Franciscan junior forward Leo Herrmann scored with a penalty kick, tying the game at 1-1.
However, the second half proved to be an even bigger challenge for the Barons, when Penn State Behrend scored their second goal after what some thought should have been a penalty against the visiting squad.
Duran commented on the frustrating referee call, saying, “There’s a lot of times where we could get frustrated on the field but we just have to shake it off really fast and think ‘next play.’”
And that’s exactly what the team did. The Barons’ offense kept the pressure on until the last second with several close shots, but they were never able to make the comeback.
After the game, Bobak wanted to thank the students and families for all the support. He said, “It was a battle and we knew it was going to be a battle so we’re really appreciative to all the fans that came out.”
The Barons’ also suffered a loss in their last home game on Saturday, Oct. 22 against Medaille College.