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Lancers blow by No. 14 Madonna

by | Feb 24, 2021 | RRSN News, Soccer Blogs | 0 comments

BRIGHTON, Mich. – Grace’s men’s soccer team continued its strong play of late, taking down No. 14 Madonna 4-1 on Tuesday.

The Lancers were led by two goals apiece from Ulisses Miranda and Felipe Gruber. The win marks Grace’s highest-ranked upset in over a decade.

The victory comes on the heels of another near-upset; Grace lost to No. 8 Northwestern Ohio 2-1 on Feb. 17 thanks to a penalty kick in the final minute.

The Lancers have scheduled a Top 25 gauntlet this spring, testing themselves against some of the top teams in the NAIA. On Saturday Grace will travel to Fort Wayne to play No. 21 Indiana Tech.

“Today was a good result for us. Madonna is a well-coached and experienced team, and a win against a perennial NAIA tournament team like that is very good,” said Grace head coach Arron Patrick. “We finished the game really well and controlled the ball. I think our team is starting to show their growth over the past year now.”

The Crusaders struck first just 15 minutes into the contest. Madonna earned a corner kick, and the Crusaders volleyed a shot off a Grace defender into the net.

Grace was unable to record a shot until the 17th minute when Ulisses Miranda’s effort was blocked. But Grace’s offense was just warming up.

Miranda seemed to be Grace’s best chance of attack in the first half, recording the Lancers’ first three shots. The Lancers earned a few free kicks in dangerous positions, but each time the Crusaders were up to the task of defending.

Grace found an equalizer with 10 minutes remaining in the first half. Jordan Jayapuram and Jonny Mora teamed up for a quick corner kick, and Miranda headed in the goal to the far post.

Grace’s second goal also came after a corner kick just six minutes later. Mora and Gruber connected to find Miranda, who put the Lancers ahead in the 42nd minute.

The Lancers took their 2-1 lead into halftime. Grace had eight shots in the opening half with six being on target. Madonna tried seven shots with just two on goal.

In the 53rd minute, Grace found a third goal. The Lancers were fouled in a dangerous position, and Jayapuram quickly found Gruber for the goal.

Gruber, who has scored in three straight matches, added his second goal of the contest in the 78th minute. Mitchel Strawser gave Gruber a breakaway with a long pass, and Gruber took care of the rest to beat the goalkeeper for the final 4-1 scoreline.

“I thought we were terrible in the first half. We were slow with and without the ball and just didn’t look like ourselves. Despite that we were able to get into scoring position, and Ulisses finished well for us,” Patrick said. “We talked about intensity and quality at halftime, and the boys were magnificent in the second half. Madonna had some good attacks as quality teams do, but we weathered those well.”

The Lancers finished with a 14-13 edge in shots and 5-4 in corner kicks. Eight of Grace’s 14 shots were on goal.

Miranda had nine shots and five on goal, and Gruber added three shots and two on frame. Joe Bowles made five saves to earn the win as goalkeeper.

BRIGHTON, Mich. – Grace’s men’s soccer team continued its strong play of late, taking down No. 14 Madonna 4-1 on Tuesday.

The Lancers were led by two goals apiece from Ulisses Miranda and Felipe Gruber. The win marks Grace’s highest-ranked upset in over a decade.

The victory comes on the heels of another near-upset; Grace lost to No. 8 Northwestern Ohio 2-1 on Feb. 17 thanks to a penalty kick in the final minute.

The Lancers have scheduled a Top 25 gauntlet this spring, testing themselves against some of the top teams in the NAIA. On Saturday Grace will travel to Fort Wayne to play No. 21 Indiana Tech.

“Today was a good result for us. Madonna is a well-coached and experienced team, and a win against a perennial NAIA tournament team like that is very good,” said Grace head coach Arron Patrick. “We finished the game really well and controlled the ball. I think our team is starting to show their growth over the past year now.”

The Crusaders struck first just 15 minutes into the contest. Madonna earned a corner kick, and the Crusaders volleyed a shot off a Grace defender into the net.

Grace was unable to record a shot until the 17th minute when Ulisses Miranda’s effort was blocked. But Grace’s offense was just warming up.

Miranda seemed to be Grace’s best chance of attack in the first half, recording the Lancers’ first three shots. The Lancers earned a few free kicks in dangerous positions, but each time the Crusaders were up to the task of defending.

Grace found an equalizer with 10 minutes remaining in the first half. Jordan Jayapuram and Jonny Mora teamed up for a quick corner kick, and Miranda headed in the goal to the far post.

Grace’s second goal also came after a corner kick just six minutes later. Mora and Gruber connected to find Miranda, who put the Lancers ahead in the 42nd minute.

The Lancers took their 2-1 lead into halftime. Grace had eight shots in the opening half with six being on target. Madonna tried seven shots with just two on goal.

In the 53rd minute, Grace found a third goal. The Lancers were fouled in a dangerous position, and Jayapuram quickly found Gruber for the goal.

Gruber, who has scored in three straight matches, added his second goal of the contest in the 78th minute. Mitchel Strawser gave Gruber a breakaway with a long pass, and Gruber took care of the rest to beat the goalkeeper for the final 4-1 scoreline.

“I thought we were terrible in the first half. We were slow with and without the ball and just didn’t look like ourselves. Despite that we were able to get into scoring position, and Ulisses finished well for us,” Patrick said. “We talked about intensity and quality at halftime, and the boys were magnificent in the second half. Madonna had some good attacks as quality teams do, but we weathered those well.”

The Lancers finished with a 14-13 edge in shots and 5-4 in corner kicks. Eight of Grace’s 14 shots were on goal.

Miranda had nine shots and five on goal, and Gruber added three shots and two on frame. Joe Bowles made five saves to earn the win as goalkeeper.