Published: August 26, 2016
Bradley 1, at Gonzaga 1
SPOKANE, WA - Logan Ketterer stopped a first half penalty kick shot and junior Buseese Lwanga scored his first career goal, helping Bradley rally for a 1-1 draw at Gonzaga in the season-opener for both teams Friday night at Luger Field.
Posting its first season-opening tie since 1995, Bradley is now 19-2-1 all-time in season-openers under veteran head coach Jim DeRose.
Gonzaga outshot the Braves, 10-4, in the first half, but Ketterer posted four saves in the scoreless half, including a diving stop toward his right to stop a Christo Michaelson penalty kick in the 34th minute. Although Bradley had only one shot on goal in the first half, Zags keeper Ben Willis made a brilliant diving save to keep a Suad Suljic flick away from the far post in the 37th minute.
The hosts pressured Bradley hard to start the second half and broke through in the 49th minute when Jakob Granlund drove home the game's first tally in traffic from the right flank at 48:02.
The score held until Bradley generated a long throw from Jacob Taylor in the 61st minute. Gonzaga was unable to get a solid clearance of the throw into the box, and the ball bounced back out to Taylor, who looped a service back into the front of the net, where the 6-foot-2 Lwanga was able to nod the ball over Willis for the tying goal at 60:56.
While the first overtime period was largely uneventful, Gonzaga pressured the Braves for the majority of the final period, outshooting Bradley 5-0 in the final 10 minutes. The Missouri Valley Conference preseason all-league goalkeeper, Ketterer was up to the challenge, however, making his final two of eight saves to preserve the season-opening road result.
Bradley will return to action Sunday when the Braves take on San Diego State in a noon (PT) start at Luger Field. The Aztecs also came away with a 1-1 draw Friday against UIC.
Following Sunday's game, the Braves will open their 2016 home season by hosting Fairleigh Dickinson, #24 Utah Valley and Evansville in the Hotels at Grand Prairie Classic. Bradley will face Fairleigh Dickinson at 7 p.m. Friday and Utah Valley at 7 o'clock Sept. 4 at Shea Stadium.