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Tuesday, June 18
The Indiana Daily Student

sports men's soccer

The Hoosiers are back on track


After an unfamiliar period of early-season struggles, the IU men's soccer team has now won two out of their last three games following Sunday's 2-1 victory over Brown.

A rainy evening at Bill Armstrong Stadium created a slick field and sloppy play from both sides, but the Hoosiers continued to excel set pieces, netting each of their goals directly from free kicks. 

IU scored the game’s opening goal with 18 minutes and nine seconds remaining in the first half.

After freshman forward Tommy Thompson earned a foul just outside the Bears’ 18-yard box, junior midfielder Dylan Mares continued the Hoosiers’ strong set piece performance of the young season, driving a free kick around the defensive wall and into the net’s opposite corner.

The goal was Mares’ first in a Hoosier uniform since transferring from Louisville in the spring.

“It feels great. It feels like a small weight has been lifted off my shoulders,” Mares said. “It’s been frustrating, getting so close, but it feels really good to put it in the back of the net.”

Brown leveled with Jose Salama’s goal off a header with 17 minutes and 51 seconds remaining in the game, but the score remained tied for only 36 seconds.

Continuing the Hoosiers’ success with free kicks were senior midfielders A.J. Corrado and Nikita Kotlov, who linked up for the decisive goal with 17 minutes and 15 seconds to play.

Despite being left out of the starting lineup with a slight injury, Kotlov made his mark on the game on the receiving end of Corrado’s free kick, rising above a scrum in front of the goal to head the ball home.

Kotlov said his injury bothered him but did not affect his play once he joined the game.

“I actually got injured last game, but I told them I was ready to go today,” Kotlov said. “I was actually supposed to play in the first half … but we had a 1-0 lead. We
continued to fight and do good, and they gave me the go-ahead to go in. I had a lot of energy in me.”

IU Coach Todd Yeagley said his team’s recent success in dead-ball situations is the result of a concentrated effort and has given the Hoosiers an added dimension of attack.

“We wanted to be multi-dimensional,” he said. “We’re not finding the back of the net as much in the run of play as we’d like, and we’re still pretty good, but when you can do that off of restarts, you can hit teams both ways.

“We knew we’d create a lot of fouls, so we spent more time on it. It’s paying dividends for us, and we’re pleased that part of our game is doing well.”

With the victory, IU moves to 3-3-1 on the season and will finish the non-conference portion of the season with a game at Butler on Wednesday.

Follow reporter Alden Woods on Twitter @acw9293.

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