133-67-13 (.654) record since 2001
DECATUR, ILL.- Powered by two more goals from forward Aleksandar Glavas (junior, Loves Park, Ill., Guildford HS), the Central College men’s soccer team, defeated Millikin University 4-1 on Saturday night.
Glavas, who has five goals in the season’s first three games, had two second-half scores to break open a tight game.
It was an even first half. Midfielder Dillon Thornbury (senior, Memphis, Tenn., Collierville HS) started the scoring with a header off of a corner kick in the 21st minute. The Big Blue (0-3) responded 10 minutes later on rebounded ball off of a save by goalkeeper Tim Maggard (senior, Los Angeles, Calif., South Torrance HS).
The halftime stat sheet told a similar story. Central (2-1) and Millikin were even in shots (5-5), while Central held a slight advantage in shots on goal (3-2) and corner kicks (2-0).
Maggard, making his second-consecutive appearance in goal, made one first-period save.
“We played really well in the first half,” coach Garry Laidlaw said. “We got up one goal, but conceded a goal that gave Millikin some hope entering halftime. In the second half we came out more focused and concentrated. The finishes were great.”
Glavas took over with his two second-period goals--the first on a direct free kick and the second nine minutes later. Both goals were unassisted.
“Glavas keeps popping up at the most important times and when we need him,” said Laidlaw. “He is off to a fantastic start this year.”
Thornbury added one goal for good measure in the 86th minute, assisted by forward Spencer Boeyink (Pella). Boeyink is in the starting lineup after spending two seasons as a starting defensive back for the Dutch football team.
“Spencer had his best game of the season thus far,” Laidlaw said. “He is shaking off some rust from not playing for two years and is gaining confidence. Dillon Thornbury made some great plays tonight, as well.”
Maggard needed to make just two saves, as the defense kept the Big Blue from breaking through.
“Our back four played fantastic as a whole,” said Laidlaw. “The guys that came in off the bench made solid contributions, also. Dan Peacock (midfielder, senior, Ankeny) really led the team as a captain and Mark Hentschel (midfielder, junior, West Des Moines, Dowling Catholic HS) in the middle was very good. We were relying on them a lot early. We challenged our players to pick up their games and we got some jump-starts from the other players. There were significant contributions all over the pitch, which you need in a tight game.
“It was another steady performance from Maggard in goal. We feel good with the depth we have at that position.”
Central led in shots (10-9), shots on goal (7-4) and corner kicks (3-2), but the margins did not reflect the three-goal advantage.
“Millikin is a good, young team,” Laidlaw said. “Our possession today was the best of the season. We had quite a bit of the ball, moved it well and passed it well. Finally we put the last piece in finishing our chances.
“I thought we played really well from start to finish. It was our most complete performance of the season thus far. We have a challenging game tomorrow, but I think coming off of this game our guys have added confidence.”
The Dutch (2-1) continue on to Bloomington, Ill. for Sunday’s 4 p.m. game versus Illinois Wesleyan. The Titans are 1-0-1 heading into a Saturday evening game with Simpson College. They lead the all-time series with Central 2-0, getting a 4-1 victory at Pella last fall.