Oct. 13, 2007
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AKRON, Ohio - The Northern Illinois men's soccer team played No. 18 Akron even for 110 minutes, Saturday, tying the Zips 0-0 in Mid-American Conference action.
"If you look at the stats, Akron is a very very difficult team to play on their field," head coach Steve Simmons said. "That's a fact, and there are not too many teams who come here and come out with anything. From a results standpoint, a tie is going to be something that will bless us more than hurt us in the MAC campaign."
The Huskies (4-5-4, 1-0-1 MAC) were outshot 20-4 by the Zips (8-2-2, 1-0-1 MAC), but NIU goalkeeper Joe Zimka (Algonquin, Ill./Jacobs) kept the Huskies in the match with eight saves in his first action since injuring his leg Sept. 26 against Wisconsin.
"They had the lions share of the chances, but we probably had the two best chances of the match," Simmons said. "Joe did a good job in goal. We were lucky enough to have two quality keepers available for the match between him and Brian Van Buren. Their combined talents will continue to be a real boone to us down the road."
Northern Illinois set a school-record with its fourth tie of the season, and has now lost only one of its last eight matches against MAC competition.
"At the end of the day we get a point from it and move on to face another tough game with Buffalo," Simmons said.
Northern Illinois will continue its MAC schedule at home against the Bulls, Saturday, Oct. 20 at 1 p.m. (CST) at Huskie Soccer Field.