It is safe to say that Duquesne Men’s Soccer freshman midfielder Ryan Goodhew has earned trust with the coaching staff given the many responsibilities assigned to him.
Goodhew starts, takes direct and free kicks and corners. Sunday afternoon against Robert Morris, that faith was validated.
Goodhew darted towards the goal and Nate Dragisich found him on a cross and connected. The goal literally took Duquesne to the locker room as the bench raced towards the Australian.
“Obviously it’s special, first goal in overtime,” Goodhew said. “There’s no better time to do it and to be able to celebrate with all the mates on the team is an unreal experience. I just saw everyone coming over and I go to the boys.”
Mere days after a 7-0 setback to #3 Pitt, Duquesne returned to Rooney Field and won its season opener 3-2 over Robert Morris winning the Pittsburgh Derby in the process.
“I’m proud of the guys’ resilience today,” Duquesne coach Chase Brooks said. “We definitely have some things to clean up, we have to make sure we do better in some of those defensive situations but it’s early and we’re young back there. I’m excited for the growth and for the win.”
Duquesne had been the aggressors for much of the game and owned a 23-10 shot advantage in addition to a 12-3 on goal edge.
Though the on-field temperature exceeded 111 degrees and there was a lightning delay which totaled one hour, 10 minutes, Duquesne persevered and protected its pitch at the same time.
“The message was that this is our home field and we defend it,” Duquesne senior captain Ryan Landry said. “No one comes out of here with a result and that’s what we did at the end of the day.”
Duquesne now improves to 10-0-1 in the last 11 Pittsburgh Derby matches held at Rooney Field.
“We’ve had our run ins with RMU from fall and spring season,” said Landry. “It’s good that my last-ever meeting with them is a W.”
Coming into the game Brooks stated the opening 10-15 minutes of the contest would determine how his team would respond after a setback to Pitt which admittedly embarrassed the team.
After processing what happened for the duration of Thursday night, it was onto film session, which Brooks believed resonated and focused the team come practice.
Had the two days between not translated, Brooks believed it would have come down to a change in approach and communication, which would have been a quick adjustment since Duquesne’s next contest is Tuesday evening.
“Obviously Thursday night hurt but you’re playing against a team that is probably the best in the country in my opinion,” he said. “We tried to take it as a learning experience and then move forward. We did a lot of film and training sessions over the past two days. We pushed, we had to.”
Entering Sunday, there were smiles, but a focus was also present and upon surveying the Duquesne bench, the response was unanimous.
“It’s a great day for a win,” the bench clearly stated.
Landry in particular had early opportunities with RMU’s formation allowing for the wings to have space. Landry’s first shot was just left of target, but he cashed in from just north of the 20-yard line, successfully firing a rocket towards the top-left portion of the goal.
The goal came in the 10th minute, a clear answer to Brooks’s question as to whether the team would respond.
Landry had another opportunity but missed his shot, though it was another message to his team to keep grinding, something Brooks opined meant he had earned his ice bath.
With Landry, the captain, leading the Duquesne side by example, it was up to his teammates to match that intensity.
“Lando’s always been a player to lead from the front and for him to set the example early is great,” said Goodhew. “It makes us want to try harder and follow his example.”
RESPONDING TO ADVERSITY
Duquesne was controlling pace and had momentum, but had two first-half slips on the defensive end that saw that edge fade away.
RMU freshman Gal Ben Dayan was fouled in the box meaning Duquesne had to face a PK for the second time in as many games and the Israeli was able to convert.
In the 31st minute, the Colonials struck again on a 50-50 ball where they were the aggressors on a 50-50 ball inside of the box and Owen Jowett put the ball in the back of the net.
Instead of panicking or self destructing, Duquesne quickly regained its composure as Logan Muck received a pass on the run from Landry and went lower left on RMU goalkeeper Friedrich Petrelli, squaring the match.
“We did something we couldn’t do versus Pitt which was concede and then respond,” Brooks said. “We responded in the right ways today, which is what you look for as a coaching staff and as a student-athlete here. It was nice to see that response. We had to take a step forward today and make sure those moments didn’t get us.”
The score remained level until the second overtime. Duquesne had an opportunity when Jayden Da got inside the box with a clean look, but he got under the kick too much and his attempt sailed high of the goal.
Goodhew’s goal had the Duquesne side buzzing and Brooks hopes it will help the team keep momentum, while potentially being the start of a winning streak.
“Goodie is a fantastic player and just a tremendous potential in leadership,” said Brooks. “To watch him score that goal on the hard work and get over the frustration that he and we had from Thursday night was I think a big moment for the team as a whole.”