Blue Demons Continue Charge Through BIG EAST
CHICAGO – For the third time in the last four BIG EAST matches, the DePaul men’s soccer team posted a victory with the latest edition via a 2-1 decision over St. John’s on Saturday afternoon. John Partyka and Nathan Feltz put together goals in a four-minute span as the Blue Demons topped the Red Storm, 2-1, at Wish Field. With the win, DePaul climbs into a four-way tie for second place in the BIG EAST Red Division.
The first half featured a defensive battle as the two clubs combined for just five shots. Fifteen minutes into the match, Julian Chill dribbled around St. John’s goalkeeper Jason Landers and sent a cross in front of the open net. However, the Red Storm defense deflected the pass and cleared the ball upfield.
Midway into the second half, St. John’s (7-5-2, 3-4-2 BIG EAST) broke the scoreless tie with a goal by Michael Luk. After receiving a pass from Jara Habib just outside the penalty box, Luk sent a looping shot over DePaul keeper Brian Visser that slipped under the crossbar and into the net. Luk’s first goal of the season came at 68:44 to give the visitors the first advantage of the afternoon.
Ten minutes later, a St. John’s foul in the penalty box set up the first penalty kick opportunity of the season for the Blue Demons. John Partyka, playing in his Senior Day match, lined up the kick and drilled it to the lower right corner past a diving Landers to knot the score at 78:31.
DePaul (5-9-2, 4-5-0 BIG EAST) didn’t take any time to celebrate as Nathan Feltz created his own counter-attack off a St. John’s corner kick in the 82nd minute. The freshman dribbled through the Red Storm defense and tickled the twine over a charging Landers at 81:51 for the 2-1 score. His eventual game-winner came from just inside the penalty box on the left flank.
DePaul finished the match with five shots while St. John's was able to get off seven attempts. Visser made four saves in the 90 minutes and Landers was credited with one stop. The Red Storm took five corner kicks in the while DePaul created a single corner kick opportunity.
The Blue Demons conclude the home schedule on Wednesday afternoon with a BIG EAST match against Cincinnati. Kickoff with the Bearcats is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Wish Field. The regular-season finale is set for next Saturday with a road match at Syracuse. The 2006 BIG EAST Championship starts on Wednesday, Oct. 25 with first round matches at campus sites.
Match Notes: John Partyka is 3-for-3 in his career on penalty kicks… he tallied his first two successful tries during the 2004 season… the penalty kick chance was the first of the season for DePaul… Partyka and Nathan Feltz are the seventh and eighth different players to score this season… Feltz is the sixth freshmen to score in 2006… the five victories are the most since eight wins in 2003… the series with St. John’s is now tied at 1-1-0.