Aug 25, 2013
EAST LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan State men’s soccer team tied Butler with a 0-0 deadlock in its final exhibition on Saturday evening in Kentwood, Mich. 17 field players in addition to two goalies contributed in the game for MSU. The entire active Spartan roster saw action during the 2013 preseason.
“I thought our group performed pretty well,” said head coach Damon Rensing. “I thought we controlled the tempo for most of the game. I thought our ball movement and speed of play was very good. We got into the final third and that’s just something that we’re going to have to continue to work on. To Butler’s credit, I think they were pretty organized defensively. We were maybe a little impatient or just have to get better on decisions, but we created a couple of chances. All in all, we were ok going into the locker room tied 0-0.”
The Spartans paced the game throughout the first half, pressing Butler with several opportunities. A collective effort gave MSU an aggressive edge on the Bulldogs to force a first half total of seven shots to Butler’s one. Redshirt senior Ryan Thelen and sophmore Jay Chapman each had two shots on target and junior Adam Montague forced a Butler corner before his chance was just wide.
“We really started to take control of the game in the second half and controlled that from that from start to finish. We created a foul that may or may not have been a penalty that was pushed outside the box, but all in all, we were just a little bit more dangerous. We just couldn’t get the ball in the net to reward us for what I think was a pretty well-played game. We did play almost the entire second team for the last 15-30 minutes and I thought those guys kept the tempo up and kept control of the game. I was pleased from our performance. It’s good to get a shutout. I think we gave up only one or two shots on goal the entire game, so I think those things are very good.”
Sophomore goalkeeper Zach Bennett helped keep Butler to just two shots and a Spartan shutout. A late foul on freshman Ali Scheib was pushed just outside the box to take away a penalty kick opportunity in the last 10 minutes of the game.
“We really want to thank the Grand Rapids soccer community. There was an awesome crowd. We had probably close to 3,000 people at the game tonight and a good portion of our Red Cedar Rowdies. They were awesome.”
Despite the tie score at the end of regulation, the teams did not play any extra minutes and the game settled in a 0-0 tie.
Michigan State will be back in action on Tuesday, Aug. 27 for their annual Green and White scrimmage at DeMartin Stadium. The game will begin at 7:30 p.m. and admission is free.