Halfway into the second half of the men’s’ soccer game Oct. 4 against California Lutheran University, Chapman senior forward Kai Howe attempted his sixth shot on goal for the game – but the shot was blocked.
As frustration set in, Howe sprinted back in an effort to recover from the block, and slid into Cal Lutheran senior forward Jared Pischke, knocking Pischke off his stride.
The referee signaled for a red card after the play, leaving Howe surprised and the Panthers shorthanded for the rest of the match.
Only two of Howe’s six attempted shots were on target. Although Howe disagreed with the red card call, he said that it’s best for him to move on. The Panthers lost the game 1-0.
“(This is) only the second red card of my career,” Howe said. “I don’t really know how to deal with it. I’m a little upset.”
The Panthers came into the matchup Oct. 4 with the Cal Lutheran Kingsmen fresh off of a 3-1 victory against Pomona Pitzer. Chapman holds a 7-4 record in conference, and Howe leads the team with six goals this season.
With Howe out of the game and only 10 players left on the field, the Panthers were left at a disadvantage against the Kingsmen.
“The referee is the referee,” Howe said. “Whatever (is the referee’s) decision is the right call. I made a mistake. Obviously, I didn’t agree with it, but we have to deal with it and move on.”
Chandler Siemonsma, a Chapman freshman goalkeeper, stepped up and led the defenders for the majority of the game, recording a total of five saves.
In spite of Siemonsma’s coverage of the goal for most of the game, Pischke scored 81 minutes into the game, securing a win for Cal Lutheran.
“A lot of defending has to do with communication,” Siemonsma said. “One of my biggest jobs as a goalkeeper is to make sure my (defenders) are organized. We need to be able to trust each other and be on the same page.”
As Pischke entered the goalie box, he found an angle to shoot because Siemonsma was recovering from a dive.
More often than not, attackers will try to either finesse the ball past the keeper, or jump over the keeper in a one-on one-situation, putting the keeper in harm’s way, Siemonsma said. In this case, Pischke stayed persistent with the play and took another shot at the goal while Siemonsma was down.
“A lot of times you get cleated or kneed in the head or the legs or the ribs,” Siemonsma said. “In the moment, that’s not what I’m thinking about, though … I’m thinking about getting the ball.”
The team stayed focused on blocking Cal Lutheran’s’ fast-paced offense, which prevented them from scoring until later in the game, Siemonsma said. The defensive players worked well together, but the Panthers’ offensive game plan was lacking, head coach Eddie Carrillo said, since they didn’t score any goals.
“We gotta be a little more disciplined … a little bit more matured, and we should be good,” Carrillo said.
The Panthers will play University of Redlands Oct. 10 at 4 p.m.