RIPON, Wis. -- A second-half goal from Tyler Nelson gave the Sabercats hope, but Maranatha's hopes of a comeback were dashed by the spirited Ripon Red Hawks this afternoon.
Two early goals from Ripon were enough to secure a 2-1 win for the hosts. It was Ripon's first win in their last six games against Maranatha. For MBU, it was their fifth one-goal loss this season.
- Result: Maranatha 1-2 Ripon
- Venue: Prairie Field, Ripon College
- Location: Ripon, Wis.
- Attendance: 91
- Records: MBU (0-7-0), RC (3-4-0)
The Sabercats had a flat start, and the Red Hawks made the most of it. Just seven minutes into the game, the Red Hawks ended a well-rehearsed attack up the left side with a shot from the top of the box from Devin Hoaglin. From 20 yards out, the Red Hawks' skipper drilled his effort low and hard into the left corner to give the hosts an emphatic 1-0 lead.
Sensing the momentum, the Red Hawks poured on the pressure. Just 10 minutes later, the Red Hawks attacked up the other side of the field, and a cross from Eugene Pliska found the feet of Grant Grywalsky, who finished it into the roof of the net from close range. It was all going the Red Hawks' way.
The Sabercats then tried to recover from their rude awakening. Nelson cracked a shot from over 20 yards out, but a well-positioned Cole Jurish was up to the task in the Red Hawks' goal. Past the half-hour mark, a driven cross from Caleb Hockema nearly drifted into the top corner, but a grateful Jurish was rescued by the crossbar. At the break, the Red Hawks were still in control at 2-0.
Maranatha began the second half looking like a new team, and they began to control possession and create scoring chances. The pressure paid off in the 62nd minute when a shot from Nathan Campbell deflected into the path of Nelson, who picked out the lower corner from just inside the box. Nelson's firm finish rejuvenated the Sabercats, who had almost a half an hour to complete the comeback.
Enter the Red Hawks' defense, who negated the Sabercats' resolve over the remaining 28 minutes of the game. Andrew Ice came the closest for Maranatha, but the junior's 88th-minute shot flew just over the top corner of the net.
- Nelson: 3 shots, 2 on goal, 1 goal
- MBU: 17 players took part in the loss
- Hoaglin: 5 shots, 1 goal
- Andrew Taylor: 5 saves in the loss
- Series: the all-time series is now tied at 5-5-2
- Ripon competes with Beloit in the Midwest Conference (NCAA DIII)
- The Red Hawks just picked up wins against MacMurray (UMAC) and Lakeland (NACC)
- Ripon will begin conference play Sunday against Lake Forest (Ill.)
- Adrian Granados leads the Red Hawks with 4 assists on the season
- Hoaglin, Grywalsky, and Braden Kobus lead Ripon with 2 goals apiece
The Sabercats will look to pick up their first win of the season against an undefeated Webster University this weekend. Kickoff is Saturday at 1:00 p.m. on the MBU campus. Follow at mbusabercats.com/composite.