It was a "must win" situation for the Foresters if they wanted to keep their playoff hopes alive, and they responded with a 3-1 win over Grace College. Only the top eight teams will compete in the MCC post-season tournament next week. The victory puts HU in a tie for eighth place with Grace in the conference standings. The Foresters currently have the upper hand with the head-to-head win over the Lancers, but Grace has two MCC contests remaining and could knock HU out with a win in one or both of those matches.
The Foresters got on the board first when Andrew Wust finished a Joel Sanders assist with a score 15 minutes into the game. The Lancers had several opportunities to get the equalizer, hitting the crossbar three times in the opening period, but came away empty for a 1-0 score at the break.
Grace went on the offensive to begin the second half and knotted the score 1-1 in the 59th minute. HU battled back and earned a penalty kick on a Lancer hand ball in the box. Sanders had no trouble finding the net to reclaim the lead for the Foresters with 19 minutes remaining. Five minutes later Ben Haifley gave HU an insurance goal off Sanders' second assist in the game.
To make things interesting in the final 11 minutes, the Foresters went down a man when Sanders was ejected from the game after receiving a second yellow card in the match. Grace picked up its intensity, but HU withstood the Lancers' charge with tremendous possession play. "The guys have been working hard," said Coach Lawson. "To get a result like this is extremely gratifying."
The Foresters now stand at 3-12 on the season and 1-6 in the MCC.