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RECAP | Men's Soccer Drops Final Contest of Weekend to Illinois College

Weston DeShon
Weston DeShon

Final: Franklin 0 – Illinois College 1
Records: Franklin 0-2 | Illinois College 2-0
Location: Faught Stadium – Franklin, Ind.

FRANKLIN – Playing their final home match for the next three weeks, the Franklin College men's soccer team turned in a strong performance in the second half on Sunday against Illinois College.

The Grizzlies generated their best scoring chances of the afternoon over the final 45 minutes, but weren't able to find the back of the net in a 1-0 defeat at the hands of the Blueboys.

Illinois College grabbed the momentum early on, holding Franklin without a shot for the first 33 minutes while attempting five of their own. The last of those shots proved to be big as Nick Copley tucked a low shot into the bottom left corner of the net from in tight for the lone goal of the game.

Franklin shook off the slow start and nearly evened up the game in the 33rd minute when Jordan Thomas headed a free kick just wide of the back post.

The Griz had a pair of quality chances to draw even in the second half. The first came when Mason May got to a ball that was bobbled by Blueboys' goalkeeper Ty Clearwater, but he turnaround shot sailed wide of the cage in the 47th minute. Eight minutes later, Matt Powell found himself one-on-one in tight with the keeper, but his rocket shot was turned aside by Clearwater.

Franklin maintained pressure in the Blueboy zone for the bulk of the second half but time ran out before they could find the tying marker.

May and Thomas topped the Grizzlies with a pair of shots each. Illinois College finished the game with a 12-8 edge in attempts and a 6-2 edge in shots on goal. Garrett Belden turned in a strong performance in goal for the Grizzlies, turning aside five shots. Clearwater needed just two saves to earn the clean sheet.

The Grizzlies hit the road for their next contests, traveling to Milwaukee, Wis. on Friday, Sept. 8 for the opening game of the Warrior Invitational. Franklin takes on Knox College at 7:00 p.m. eastern time.