Huskies pile up individual stats in rout

By Tom Clegg

NIU’s soccer squad must not have been asking themselves “Will we beat Bradley?” but rather, “By how much?”

It quickly became obvious that the only mystery about the game would be the identity of the NIU team scoring leader when all the goals were counted. NIU beat the Braves 7-0 Wednesday night at Huskie Stadium.

“When you score seven goals against a team like Bradley, you’ve got to be happy,” coach Willy Roy said. The Braves had played Quincy to a 1-0 loss and nearly defeated Wisconsin earlier this year.

Freshman Willy Roy Jr. entered the game leading senior John O’Keefe by one point in the battle for Huskie scoring supremacy. But 11:45 into the match, O’Keefe tallied his 14th and 15th points on an 8-yard goal off a pass from sophomore Jim Corno.

Less than three minutes later, Roy Jr. regained his point lead with an unassisted 30-yard blast into the upper left corner of the BU goal.

O’Keefe made a drastic tactical maneuver with 12:45 showing on the first half clock when he traded in his customary red shoes for a pair of traditional black ones. The new footwear did little good as he was held scoreless for the rest of the game.

Meanwhile, Roy Jr. continued to pile on the points. Scoring a goal and an assist in the second half, he reinstated himself as the NIU scoring leader with 19 points.

Afterward, O‘Keefe still believed he could overhaul the younger Roy in next week’s finale with Northwestern “if Willy passes it a little more.”

Not to be lost in the scoring duel between O’Keefe and Roy Jr. was the play of senior co-captain Helge Abrahamsen. “The Crusader” notched two second-half goals to give him 12 points on the season.

Equally impressive was Abrahamsen’s defensive play as well as the effort shown by sophomore Preben Halle. The newly combined Norwegian backfield played a major role in limiting the Braves to five shots on the NIU goal, though Halle seemed unimpressed.

“Today it was boring,” Halle said. “It’s more fun in games where teams give us something to do.”

Senior walk-on S. Kyle Mitter was one Huskie who did not find Wednesday’s match boring. The seldom-used Mitter scored his first goal as a Huskie with 9:19 left in the match.

“I’m taking the game ball home,” he said with a huge smile.