Whits can’t keep up with Trinity

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EVERETT — Whitman College’s Alex Barsher scored his second goal in two matches and Junpei Tsuji recorded his first goal of the season here Monday, but they were not enough as the Missionary men’s soccer team fell to Trinity Lutheran, 4-2, in their final non-conference game of the preseason.

The loss drops the Missionaries to 0-4-1.

Whitman coach Mike Washington, once again, used the preseason contest as an opportunity to get as many players into the game as possible and to try an assortment of schemes and attacks.

“We shuffled the deck today,” Washington said. “We moved some people around and got some great minutes from our young players. In the second half, we ran out of gas and made a couple of mental mistakes, as young players will do.”

Whitman held a 2-1 advantage at halftime, as Barsher scored to give the Missionaries the early advantage.

The Eagles tied the match, only to see Tsuji put Whitman back in front when he launched a bomb from about 45 yards that sailed over the outstretched arms of the goalie and just under the crossbar.

“A thing of beauty,” Washington said of the goal.

As the Missionaries gave minutes to younger players and tried different systems, Trinity Lutheran took advantage of some Whitman mistakes and converted them into three more goals and a win.

Niko Contos played the first half in goal for the Missionaries, with Stuart Ellsworth getting time in the second half.

“Congrats to our players for managing such a grueling away schedule,” Washington said of Whitman’s third game in three days.

All five of the Missionaries’ preseson game have been on the road.

“Now, we get to rest for a couple days before starting our preparation for the beginning of the conference season,” Washington said.

Whitman opens Northwest Conference play at Willamette on Sept. 21.

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