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DETROIT — Ayman Youssef posted his fourth clean sheet of the campaign and Gbenga Ayanwale struck for his fifth game-winning goal of 2015 to help lift Marygrove men’s soccer to a 1-0 WHAC Quarterfinal win over Lourdes University in Detroit on Saturday (Nov. 7). The 1-0 final marked the first home playoff win in Marygrove athletics history and was the inaugural conference postseason match for the upstart first-year Lourdes Gray Wolves.
The quarterfinal win sets up a rematch with No. 8 Northwestern Ohio in the WHAC Semifinals on Tuesday (Nov. 10) at 2 p.m. in Lima, Ohio. Northwestern Ohio, the conference’s second seed, topped Lawrence Tech, 8-0, earlier on Saturday in Ohio.
On Saturday, the sixth-seeded Gray Wolves were up to the task against the third-seed Mustangs as both teams engaged in a back-and-forth battle throughout the opening half. Both teams had chances in the opening stanza with the Gray Wolves earning the lone shot on goal at the 29-minute mark.
Ayman Youssef (Dearborn Heights, Mich./Walsh Univ.) was equally up to the task, turning away the 29th minute header opportunity to spurn the Gray Wolves and help secure a scoreless deadlock at the halftime break.
The scoreless first half was a product of several missed opportunities for the Mustangs as the third-seeded Green and Gold saw one shot ring off the post and a few others miss to the right-and-left of the net. The Mustangs owned a 6-3 shots advantage overall but the Gray Wolves took home the strikes on target edge, 1-0.
After a discussion at the half with seventh-year head coach Matt Johnson, the Mustangs bounced back in the second half to strike early off of the foot of redshirt freshman forward Gbenga Ayanwale (Osun State, Nigeria/Atanda International). Ayanwale tucked in what would be his fifth game-winning tally of the season in the 50th minute after senior forward Abdoulie Jallow (Bansang, The Gambia/Rust College) slotted a ball ahead, finding his fellow forward’s feet for the scoring strike.
Youssef and the Mustangs back half took care of the rest, stymying the Gray Wolves over the final 40 minutes of action to move on in the conference tournament for the first time since 2012. Â Youssef recorded four saves to earn his fourth shutout and sixth win of the campaign for the Mustangs as the back line of Ali El Habhab, Talal Hamodi, Ma Sambou Jatta and Jeff Okerstrom stood tall in front of a Green and Gold keeper once again for the team’s sixth clean sheet of 2015.
The Gray Wolves ended their season with a 7-7-2Â overall record after a spirited effort in Detroit Saturday afternoon that resulted in 10 shots, four on target, in defeat. The Mustangs countered with 11 shots, only two on goal, to improve to 12-6-1 on the season.
With 12 wins, the 2015 edition of Marygrove men’s soccer broke a two-time program record of 11 wins in a season set in 2010 and 2013.
Ayanwale led the Mustangs attack on Saturday with five shots and the lone goal, while Jallow and Oneil Robinson (Montego Bay, Jamaica/Cornwall College) followed with a pair of shots each. Jallow’s assist was the 27th of his career as the senior continues to pad his own program record.
MEN’S SOCCERÂ CONTACT: Tim Johnston |Â [emailÂ protected]/* */Â |Â @tjohnston56
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Category: Men's Soccer