Braves return from second road trip with a split

Originally published in the September 17, 2010

For the second consecutive weekend, the Braves traveled away from Peoria, but this time they didn’t come away unscathed.

After finishing their last road trip 2-0-1, Bradley lost its first game against East Tennessee State before rebounding to trounce Alabama A&M.

In the first game, the Braves and the Buccaneers fought through a scoreless first half.  The second half got off to a quick start when ETSU scored in the 50th minute and then quickly struck again in the 56th minute.

The Braves cut the lead to one, two minutes later when junior Bryan Gaul scored on a rebound off a corner kick.

ETSU had an opportunity to stretch the lead back to two with a penalty kick in the 75th minute, but junior goalkeeper Kyle Orne stopped the shot.

“It was obviously a tough loss,” coach Jim DeRose said. “It could have gone either way. It was nice on the next day, we were able to split our opponents, we got a lot of our starters and got a lot of freshmen in the game. They were able to get some good minutes and points out there.”

The second game provided a quick turnaround for the Braves in a 7-1 victory of Alabama A&M.

The scoring started when sophomore Jochen Graf scored in the seventh minute on a breakaway goal.

Gaul continued his torrid scoring streak with the next two goals, the first came off an assist from freshman Jason Coon in the ninth minute and the second, 14 minutes later.

The first half saw a nine shot advantage for the Braves.

The Braves found the back of the net in back-to-back minutes to start the second half scoring.

Freshman Toni Ramadani and junior Christian Meza both tallied their first goals of the game.

Bradley would score one more time before the Bulldogs finally got on the scoreboard to avoid the shutout in the 77th minute.

Freshman Wojciech Wojcik finished the scoring with a goal in the 83rd minute.

“You get a couple of goals early and it takes the pressure off,” DeRose said. “I think it allows you to play and attack more uninhibited. You’re not worried about making mistakes and allowing goals. It gives freshmen the opportunity to get out there. I think at one point we had eight or nine on the field.”

Bradley will start its home schedule this weekend with the Hotels at Grand Prairie Classic.