Men: The Kenyon men’s soccer team got its season back on track over the weekend, improving to 2-2 after defeating Hanover College (Ind.) 1-0 and beating No. 14 St. Olaf College (Minn.) 2-0 two days later. Four goals from Alem Duratovic ’25, Kenyon’s top scorer last season, were decisive as the No. 5 Owls returned to their winning ways after a shaky start in their first two games.
Against Hanover, Kenyon controlled possession for much of the first half, but was unable to break the deadlock despite their 14 shots and six corners. As the second half went on, the Panthers continued to sit back and invite wave after wave of pressure from the Owls, but Kenyon could not find a way through until the 81st minute. After a short Kenyon corner, Vic Bravo ’25 dribbled down the Panthers byline and crossed to Duratovic in the box, whose close-range volley found the bottom-right corner of the goal. The Owls saw the rest of the game out relatively calmly, as Jack Pedreschi ’25 made two key saves in the second half to keep Kenyon’s first clean sheet of 2023.
Then on Sunday, Kenyon took on St. Olaf, where head coach Travis Wall spent the past four years, and won 2-0. Against the Oles, the Owls had no trouble scoring early. In the fourth minute, Duratovic ran onto Joaquin Sanchez-Korenfeld ’26’s through ball and coolly beat the quickly-approaching St. Olaf goalkeeper to make it 1-0. St. Olaf pushed for an equalizer, but could not get past Pedreschi, who made a number of wonderful saves. The Owls started the second half just as they did the first: In the 51st minute, Aidan Burns ’24 took a throw-in that connected with Benjamin Lantz ’24 in the box. Lantz’s header looped over the St. Olaf goalkeeper, doubling Kenyon’s lead. Although the Oles outshot the Owls 20-10 over the course of the 90 minutes, it was Kenyon’s seven shots on goal to St. Olaf’s four that made all the difference.
Lantz described how it felt to score his first collegiate goal for Kenyon in an email to the Collegian. “Coming out of our halftime talk we knew whoever scored next would win the game. It felt amazing to be able to personally ensure that for my brothers,” he said. “The fact that it was against our coach’s old team and that it was my first collegiate goal made it a bonus.”
On Wednesday, the Owls handily defeated Wilmington College 5-1, as Kenyon improved to 3-2. Duratovic scored two more on the day, and his first of the game came from a free kick in the 24th minute. Just outside the 18-yard box, Duratovic snuck the ball into the bottom right corner and around the Wilmington wall. Then six minutes later, midfielder Miko Warshaw ’26 scored a magnificent half-volley that scorched into the top left corner of the goal, his first of his collegiate career. Entering the second half up 2-0, the Owls continued to pile on the pressure and got their third goal in the 67th minute. Joaquin Sanchez-Korenfeld ’26 found Robert Little ’27 in the box, who tapped home his first Kenyon goal. Pedreschi’s clean sheet was spoiled five minutes later as the Quakers pulled one back, but the Owls squashed any hopes of a late Wilmington comeback in the 77th minute. Sanchez-Korenfeld played a through ball to Duratovic, who scored his fourth goal in three games. Finally, in the 82nd minute, Lantz lined up a laser into the bottom left corner to score his second goal in as many games.
In an email to the Collegian, Duratovic, who scored 18 goals last season, expressed what he valued even more than scoring over the weekend: “Scoring feels great, but the greatest feeling from the weekend was bouncing back from the previous weekend by turning things around to get two wins back and two shutouts. I think that shows great character from the whole team.” Duratovic is also confident that he, and his team, can achieve great things this season. “I want to focus more on being a better person and leader of this team. […] I believe this team can challenge and fight for anything together.” Lantz is also sure he and his team will not be resting on their momentary laurels. When asked what game he is most looking forward to, Lantz’s response was simple: “The next one.”
The Owls will return to Mavec Field on Saturday at 3:30pm to face Mount Aloysius College (Pa.) in the annual Morgan’s Message Mental Health Awareness game.
Women: Last weekend, the Kenyon women’s soccer team took on John Carroll University, New Jersey City University and Heidelberg University, improving to a record of 3-0-2.
In Friday’s game, the Blue Streaks took an early lead by dominating possession and scoring the first goal in the 11th minute. They extended their lead to 2-0 eight minutes later with a powerful shot into the bottom right corner.
The Owls remained determined and managed to narrow the deficit to 2-1 just before halftime when Julianna Granetzke ’26 capitalized on a turnover. In the second half, Kenyon intensified its attack, outshooting John Carroll 9-5 but struggling to find the net. In the 82nd minute, Jackie Thompson ’24’s delicate flick off a free kick by Olivia Carriero ’24 leveled the game at 2-2.
In an email to the Collegian, Thompson highlighted her excitement after the game: “Scoring my first collegiate goal against John Caroll was an incredible feeling, but it wouldn’t have happened without the collective energy the team brought out in the second half.”
Despite their relentless efforts, the Owls couldn’t secure the winning goal, and the match ended in a 2-2 draw.
On Sunday, Sadie Gould ’24 played a pivotal role in the Owls’ 3-0 victory over the visiting Gothic Knights from New Jersey City University. This win marked the Owls’ third triumph in four games, maintaining their undefeated record at 3-0-1, while New Jersey City’s record slipped to 1-3-0. Gould’s contributions included an assist and a goal, and her exceptional performance, along with goals from Granetzke and Morgan Baker ’25, secured a decisive victory for Kenyon. The team’s dominance extended beyond the scoreboard, as the Owls outshot their opponents 19-4, with goalkeeper Lilly Lucas ’24 making a single save to secure the shutout win.
Kenyon brought the pressure right out of the gate against Heidelberg University on Wednesday. With an early goal from Hailey Moss ’25, the Owls maintained their lead till the 70 minute mark, where the Student Princes evened the score. Unfortunately, neither team could finish it off, ultimately resulting in a 1-1 tied game.
Looking to maintain their undefeated streak, the Owls will take on Hanover College on Saturday at 1 p.m. for their Morgan’s Message Mental Health Awareness game.