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Drake goes green

Saturday’s game was Drake’s second annual “Greenest Game on Grass.” The campaign benefited non-profit organization Trees Forever. The normally blue and white Bulldogs donned green jerseys to support the cause.

Trees Forever’s mission is to plant and care for trees and the environment by empowering people, building community and promoting stewardship.

The green jerseys were auctioned off after the game, with proceeds supporting the Center on Sustainable Communities.

The Bulldogs busted out and made a statement last Saturday night as they went to double overtime and tied No. 12 University of California-Irvine as a part of the Ralph Gross Alumni Classic at Cownie Soccer Complex.

The Bulldogs held the nation’s seventh-best scoring offense to just one goal as they improved their record to 4-5-1 on the season, while dropping the Anteaters to 8-1-1 on the season.

The Anteaters came into the match allowing just two goals all season, registering eight shutouts along the way. The visitors outshot the Bulldogs 20-10.

“I think tonight was a fair result,” Drake head coach Sean Holmes said in a Drake athletics press release. “The two goals really jump started the game to action as the first 55 minutes was still an interesting game, but not super exciting. Given a month ago we would have found a way to lose; any time you can invite a top 12 team in the country to your place and as young as we are, get a result, in arguably a game we could have won, is a sign of progress.”

Gray Bailey gave the Anteaters a lead in the 56th minute when he headed in a corner from Christian Hernandez. The goal gave Bailey his third of the season.

Just two minutes later, however, the Bulldogs responded with a corner from Michael Thaden that went to Evan Harrison, who found Thomas Ostrander for his team-leading fourth goal of the season. Ostrander sent the shot to the lower right corner of the net to tie up the match at 1-1.

“If every kid on our team played with the same passion, commitment and emotion as Thomas, we would be a better team,” Holmes said in the same release.

For the rest of the half, the Bulldogs held the high-octane UC Irvine offense off the scoreboard.

Starting goalkeeper Jordan Kadlec ended up bloodied in the 106th minute and sat on the ground for several minutes before refusing to come out of the game. He finished the match with a game-high nine saves. UC Irvine’s Andrew Forstein hauled in four stops of his own.

“(Kadlec) getting cut in the second overtime and still battling through is a testament to him,” Holmes said.

Holmes also praised the play of redshirt sophomore Jordan Stanley, who made his first collegiate start.

“Jordan Stanley, for his first collegiate start to step up and play so well is a credit to him,” he said.

Ostrander led the Bulldogs with three shots and Amani Walker, who registered six shots, led the Anteaters.

On Tuesday night, the Bulldogs brought home a win versus their 2009 first-round NCAA tournament opponents, the Western Illinois Leathernecks, with a 3-2 victory.

Ostrander’s 90th-minute goal proved to be the difference as the Bulldogs totally dominated the first half of the game, outshooting them in the first period, 12-3.

Photos: Connor McCourtney

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