After graduating several core players from the fall, the team looked to fill this void of leadership and experience with talented young players who proved to be ready to step up into larger roles on this team. With only six total games on the schedule, every game mattered and the players did not disappoint. The club finished undefeated in regulation and captured the first piece of silverware for this generation of players.
Starting the season against old friends, the current squad beat a team of alumni players from past years 2-0, with second half goals from forwards Yannick Roell and Andrew Ahlers. Attention then turned to the main event of the season in Manhattan, Kansas: the annual Ed Chartrand Memorial Tournament.
Starting with Emporia State, the team went five games unbeaten over the weekend, winning their group with 7 points earned against Emporia State University (0-0), #7 Kansas State (1-0), and the University of Kansas (2-0). Goals from Roell, wingers Shrikanth Parthasarathy and Austin Werths, paired with three consecutive shutouts from Zenith Shrestha, helped secure top spot in the group. A free kick goal from defender Brad Hansell, a stunning volley from midfielder Andrew Goodrich, and a long distance shot from Roell knocked off Oklahoma in a heated 3-2 victory in the semifinals, leading to a rematch against #7 Kansas State in the finals. A second half strike by Kansas State broke the deadlock and tested the character of the young Truman squad, but a dramatic header by Roell tied the affair in the last minute of regulation. Truman would ultimately lose 5-4 after a tense penalty shootout.
With a second place finish in a major competitive tournament and a 4-0-2 record behind them, the youthful team will look to make a bigger statement in the fall season under the leadership of new president Parker Conover and vice president Phillip Schuchardt, and captains Matt Schulz and Austin Werths. Go ‘Dogs!