The first night game of the season for the Butler men’s soccer team came with another first for the season: a shutout.
There was no winner or loser in this shutout, however, as the Bulldogs (5-4-2, 1-1-1) continued their scoring struggles in a 0-0 double overtime tie against Illinois-Chicago at the Butler Bowl on Saturday.
The Flames (6-2-3, 1-0-1) recorded their second shutout of the season while Butler’s defense had arguably its best match of the season, notching the Bulldogs their first shutout of the campaign.
Constant pressure from Butler led to numerous scoring opportunities, which were often followed by counterattacks from UIC.
“To UIC’s credit, I thought they were a much better defensive team than they were an offensive team,” junior Blake Leyden said. “When we were able to get behind defenders and put the ball into the box, we were pretty successful in getting chances.”
The two squads played an even match statistically. The first half saw both teams record eight shots, three shots on net and two corner kicks.
All three of Butler sophomore goalkeeper Jon Dawson’s saves came in the first half.
Momentum shifted to the Bulldogs in the second half as they produced five more shots than the Flames (7-2). This did not break the scoreless tie though, and the match went to overtime.
Neither team scored in two 10-minute overtime periods, and the match ended in a 0-0 tie.
Butler was the controlling team in overtime, recording the only two shots on net as well as the only two corner kicks. In the end, there was never a breakthrough for either side.
Sophomore forward Austin Oldham led Butler with five shots while Leyden and fellow junior forward Tyler Pollock each tallied three shots.
UIC senior forward Eric Frazier paced the Flames’ offense with five shots, and freshman forward Jesus Torres recorded three shots.
Dawson came away with his first tie of the season and his second career shutout for the Bulldogs. UIC redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Piotr Kikolski, who has earned a decision in all of the Flames’ matches this season, grabbed his third tie of the season.
“We’ve really started to click,” Dawson said. “I think the IUPUI game was an awakening where we realized that we need to play every game.”
The Bulldogs will look to break their scoring drought against Indiana tonight at the Butler Bowl. The match is scheduled to start at 7 pm.