Gustavus looking forward to rematch with St. Olaf in NCAA Tournament
ST. PETER, Minn. (KEYC) -The Gusties are back in the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2005 when the team finished as the national runner-up.
Gustavus is fresh off a thrilling win in the second round of action after advancing thanks to penalty kicks against UW-Eau Claire in an instant classic.
“It’s probably better preparation for having a real battle, right. We realistically could have won the game in regulation. We outshot them 22-5, and we had a golden chance at the end of the game. To go to penalties, and to have that one experience and memories, be in those pressure situations where everyone had to step up, not just one guy. We’re better for that,” said Tudor Flintham, GAC men’s soccer head coach.
There can’t be any hangover from Sunday’s emotional win as Gustavus suits against St. Olaf in an all MIAC NCAA Tournament match-up.
The season series between the two teams is split 1-1 with St. Olaf winning the MIAC playoff championship game, putting plenty of fuel to the fire for Gustavus.
“We know what we’ve got to do. Seeing them win in our field in the MIAC playoff. That really hurt, all of us are coming in with a chip on our shoulder wanting to just absolutely destroy them and do whatever it takes to win,” said Raphael Cattelin, GAC junior forward.
“It’s a great match-up, two really good programs that belong in the position we’re in right now. This end of the season, every team deserves to be there, it’ll probably be the team that makes the least mistakes if I had a hunch it’ll be a one goal game. We just have to keep our composure,” Flintham added.
Systematically speaking, Gustavus certainly features all the pieces to win the rubber match between the two teams. The Gusties are averaging over two goals per game this season while holding opponents to an abysmal average of .57.
The team features four players with double digit points on the season.
“In terms of what other teams do to prepare for us, I honestly don’t know what they do because we’ve got four or five guys that can come and score for us every single time. It’s kind of next man up, we have so many guys whether starting or not that can make big plays,” said Otis Anderson, GAC junior defender.
The Sweet 16 match-up between Gustavus and St. Olaf takes place Saturday at 1:30 in the afternoon in Chicago.
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