BVU Men’s Soccer Offensive Heats Up While Defensive Struggles Continue

Tanner Frost

Despite the less than ideal start to their Spring season, the BVU Men’s Soccer team has been blessed by opportunity.

With a total of 27 players and 10 upperclassmen who wondered if they’d be able to play their season at all, the quiet fall has made way for the exciting turn of season from March through May.

Sitting in last place in the American Rivers Conference with a record of 0-5, the Beavers have struggled to convert their dedication and work ethic into wins as of yet.

However, Head Coach Ross is confident of his team’s ability to turn things around.

We are all just adapting and doing whatever we can to enjoy what we have been given,” says Minick.

Minick, alongside his Assistant Matt Tennyson in their second year leading the Men’s team, has acknowledged the changes in style the pandemic has forced upon the team and the season.

“Many of our freshmen didn’t get a chance to play their senior season, losing out on memories and experience. Our returners didn’t get a chance to earn valuable practice time in the spring,” says Minick.

Drilling the squad’s tactics and formational style since the team arrived on campus in mid-August, Minick’s focus is on going forward and attacking the opposition.

Using a base 3-5-2 formation, the outside wingers drive up and down the pitch to widen the opposition while funneling ARC opponents towards the three BVU defenders in the middle of the park.

Minick notes that the team has been eager to adopt the style of their Head Coach despite the challenges enforced by COVID such as mandatory small group work and practice broken up into groups.

The good part is that we have a young team who have a high soccer IQ and they have time to adjust and grow. It will be fun to watch once we have all the kinks worked out,” says Minick.

Facing all adversity with heads held high, the team has considered themselves lucky to be able to compete in the ever-changing conditions of the 2020-2021 school year.

“I think it’s important for us to realize what a gift we’ve been given by playing any sort of games at all,” says Minick. “To be able to compete against these quality teams is an awesome way to be able to learn the pros and cons of our new formation. We have a ton of freshmen who are looking to gain a great deal of experience and adapt to the college game which is so much faster and more physical.”

BVU’s young roster carried over from 2019 scored 15 goals in their 18 games. The team’s lone win came in the form of a 2-0 triumph over Crown College in a non-conference matchup, earning Coach Minick his first collegiate win.

As for 2021, the Beavers began the season with a tough-to-take 0-8 loss against the Wartburg Knights at the end of March. Following that defeat with two more losses against Simpson and Luther 2-9, and 0-4 respectively, the BV defense struggled in their opening matchups.

Braeden Evans and Brody Steinfeldt would claim their first goals of the season for BVU in the squad’s pair of strikes against the Storm.

A 0-4 road loss to the Luther Norse in Decorah would then set the stage for a pair of chances for the Beavers to defend their home field against a struggling side, and one of the best in the league.
First facing off with Nebraska Wesleyan last Wednesday night, BV struck first with a 52nd minute goal from Evans.

The Prairie Wolves would answer quickly with a goal of their own. Tied at 1-1, a 74th minute goal for the visitors saw NWU take the lead for the first time in the game.

BVU found the net once again just a minute later from Zachary Tretler, and the 2-2 deadlock would last until a late winner scored by Nebraska Wesleyan in the 89th minute to put the game to bed.

Following the tough loss with another 5-2 defeat to Loras at home, BVU’s offense has begun to find its footing with two goals in the last four games. Chris Miller would find the net twice against the Norse for his team’s two goals.

After five games, Evans and Miller are tied for the team’s top scorer mark with two each.

 Despite the lack of success on the field so far this Spring, Minick and Tennyson trust the process they’re implementing for the future of their young roster.

“We are still building and getting our program where we want it to be. It is not an overnight process but the guys are all on board with the direction we are going and we couldn’t be more excited to get to our destination,” Minick adds.

Due to COVID-19 regulations, the Men will only face ARC opposition this Spring. Their next game with the Dubuque Spartans also takes place on Saturday, April 17 at Dubuque.


Kickoff will be at 6:00. Fans are welcome as long as masks are worn and social distancing guidelines are followed.