Men's Soccer Analysis: Northwestern

After every match, men's soccer beat reporter Stuart Jackson will offer his thoughts and analysis. Read on to find out which individual and team performances stood out to him from Sunday's 1-1 double overtime draw with Northwestern.

Here are three things that stood out to me from Sunday’s 1-1 double-overtime draw with Northwestern:

• Hoosiers unlucky once again at home against conference opponent

Indiana still has not won a Big Ten game at home this season, and it’s because of some unlucky breaks their fellow conference opponents have gotten. Against Penn State on Sept. 13, the Nittany Lions’ Mason Klerks had an unbelievable goal from 18 yards out that the Hoosier defense could do nothing about. It was the lone goal of the match, and IU walked off Jerry Yeagley Field without any points in the Big Ten standings. We saw a somewhat similar scenario against Northwestern on Sunday, when IU conceded a goal in the 89th minute to draw 1-1. The Hoosiers just can’t seem to catch a break at home – they’re better on the road and at neutral sites this season (3-0-0) than at home (2-1-3).

• Oliver becoming a threat on offense

Junior forward Andrew Oliver has been dangerous at the forward position and nearly on the receiving end of plenty goal-scoring opportunities. But so far, he has yet to convert. The numbers are encouraging – he has 15 shots through the first eight games this season. Similar to the entire team, though, he just can’t seem to catch a break. In Oliver’s case, he’s dealt with offsides calls or poor passing in the final third – both of which have contributed to him being without a goal to this point. Despite those factors, the shot attempts have allowed him to become more of a threat on offense. When he scores his first goal, the threat will be evening bigger.

• Another overtime game with the same result

Sunday’s double overtime match with Northwestern was IU’s third overtime game this season. Like the other two double overtime matches, this ended one ended in a draw. To put the result into perspective, the Hoosiers had played in five overtime games by this time last season. The overtime games are nothing to worry about – three draws are a better result than the four losses and one draw like last year. One point for a tie (even in overtime) is better than no points and a heartbreaking OT loss. But these are valuable points for the conference standings that they are letting go. It needs to change if they want to stay at the top of the conference.


Peegs.com Top Stories