Niles defeats Dowagiac for the second time in a week

Published 8:27 am Sunday, August 27, 2023

DOWAGIAC — For the second time in a week, visiting Niles handed Dowagiac another loss in non-conference soccer by scoring numerous goals in the second half.

The Vikings won the Chieftain Invitational with a 6-1 victory over Dowagiac. The tournament was scheduled to be a round robin with Cassopolis, but the Rangers pulled out of the tournament Friday night.

Niles (6-0) grabbed a 2-1 halftime lead over the Chieftains on goals by Owen Podlin and Ben Bruckner, Podlin also had an assist, while Levi Haboush also had an assist.

Dowagiac’s lone goal came off the foot of Eli Stout.

“We played another good half today but couldn’t put the two halves together again,” said Dowagiac Coach Joey Pasternak. “We have a lot of good players, but we are young in the sense of varsity experience and that will come with more games. We have to come together and continue to play our style the entire game and we will see good things happen.”

The Vikings on Monday in their come-from-behind win over the Chieftains scored seven goals in the second half. On Saturday, Niles scored three times in the final 30 minutes to remain undefeated.

Sawyer Lundberg, Gavyn Luke and Juan Campos found the back of the net for the Vikings. Bruckner assisted on the first two goals.

Niles Coach Scott Riggenbach said that his team was able to take advantage of the Chieftains’ inexperience.

“Dowagiac is going to be a solid team,” he said. “They were able to work the ball on us and take us out of our game. In the second half, we upped the pressure and were able to get some shots on goal. Our defense played a more solid game then when we played them last week and I’m pleased with the result.”

Niles outshot Dowagiac 15-7. Josue Gonzalez had four saves for the Vikings.

Dowagiac (0-2) hosts former Wolverine Conference foe Three Rivers on Tuesday, while Niles is back on the pitch Monday when it travels to Berrien Springs for another non-conference match.