Sept. 18, 2016
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio State men’s soccer team picked up three crucial points in the Big Ten standings following a 3-1 win over Rutgers Sunday afternoon at Bert L. & Iris S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. With the win, the Buckeyes improve to 2-5 overall and 2-1 in Big Ten play, while the Scarlet Knights drop to 0-6 overall and 0-3 in conference action. Junior forward Nate Kohl, senior back Austin Bergstrom and sophomore midfielder Abdi Mohamed each netted goals in the home victory.
“We spoke during the week how we needed to turn our season around and I thought our guys were very sharp right from the start today,” head coach John Bluem said. “Our attacking play was very good in the first 20 minutes and that was the positive start we were hoping for this afternoon. We let them have a reason to believe with an early goal to start the second half, but Abdi had another wonderful strike for a third goal. He’s very good at those free kicks and has been a dangerous player for us this season.”
Nate Kohl STRIKES FIRST
Right from the opening whistle, the Buckeyes were on the attack pressuring the Rutgers’ backline. The combination of speed and power by senior forward Danny Jensen and Nate Kohl was a problem for the Scarlet Knights, who allowed three shots on goal in the opening three minutes of action. After a throw-in from midfield, Jensen sent a through ball to Kohl who sprinted down the near sideline and sneaked a low shot inside the near post at 4:56 for the early 1-0 lead. The two OSU forwards combined for seven shots in the first half, including five on target.
BERGSTROM CONVERTS ANOTHER PK
The Buckeyes continued to control possession deep in Rutgers territory and earned a penalty kick in the 27th minute when a hand ball foul was called inside the box off a free kick attempt from Bergstrom. The OSU co-captain then buried the attempt at 26:13 to put the Scarlet and Gray ahead, 2-0. It marked the second converted penalty kick in two games for Bergstrom.
DOMINANT FIRST HALF
At half, shots were 11-2 in favor of the Buckeyes, while Ohio State lead in corners 2-1. The 11 shots were the most by the squad in one half this season. Seven of the 11 shots were on target, too
RUTGERS TRIMS THE LEAD
The Scarlet Knights started the second half with a goal to cut the Buckeye lead in half. Niel Guzman headed in a goal inside the far post off a corner at 46:58. It marked just the second score by the Scarlet Knights this year.
MOHAMED BRILLIANT AGAIN
Ohio State pushed its lead back to two goals thanks to the foot of sophomore midfielder Abdi Mohamed. A native of Westerville, Ohio, Mohamed buried a free kick from 20 yards out into the top left corner of goal at 53:30 for his second goal of the season. It was another brilliant strike by the second-year Buckeye after scoring five days earlier on the road at Penn State from the similar position on the field on a free kick attempt.
DEFENSE HOLDS STRONG
The Buckeye defense limited Rutgers to seven shots with just three on target in 90 minutes of play. The seven shots tied the fewest shots allowed by the OSU backline this season. Redshirt freshman Parker Siegfried had a quiet game in goal with two saves, but improved to 2-5 overall in 2016.
Ohio State takes on Valparaiso at 7 p.m. ET Wednesday at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The contest will be the Connor Senn Memorial Match. As always, admission is free.