By Jake Ziel
Journal Sports Writer
NEW ULM - The Martin Luther College men's soccer team was looking for its first win of the year in the home opener against Finlandia University.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
Finlandia University goalie Gerardo Preciado (right) prepares to make a save on a shot from Martin Luther College’s Tyler Prekop (17) during the first half Saturday at MLC in New Ulm.
The Knights failed to score in the first half with a nasty wind at their back, but Steve Roekle punched in a pair of second half goals to lead MLC to a 2-0 victory.
In the first half, MLC dominated the possession but failed to score. A handball wiped away a goal by Kaleb Buch early on and the Knights couldn't get any closer.
Playing into the wind in the second half, Roekle took a nice cross from Ryan Lemke and sent it into the goal to put the Knights on the board.
"We were playing too much to the inside," said coach Paul Koelpin. "we needed to go from the outside of the field to the inside and then something would happen, and that's exactly what happened on the first goal."
Roekle's first goal loosened things up and about 15 minutes later, Roekle took a pass from Colton Berger and sent it into the corner of the net for his second goal of the game.
The Knights defense held Finlandia scoreless and preserved a shutout.
"It's always real nice to get that first win," Koelpin said. "We played two really good teams to start out the season. Now we get a win against you probably should beat, because you are possessing the ball better. So, to play a better second half and come up with the win, it just feels nice."
MLC outshot Finlandia 14 to four and also placed nine shots on goal.
The Knights improve to 1-2 with the win and host Buena Vista on Tuesday afternoon.