COLUMBIA —The Columbia College soccer team's seniors Alex Rangel, Ryan Goldkamp, Jimmy Herrman and Ken Searles should be angry.
Not only did visiting Truman State University spoil their senior day plans by fighting back to tie the Cougars 2-2 with only 10 men after a red card, the Cougar juniors stole the glory by scoring the goals.
Forward Parker Rawdon and midfielder Brian Eike scored the goals for Columbia College in the second half.
In the past three games, Rawdon has found the back of the net twice and now worked his way into the starting lineup.
He credits his inspired play to a newly found sense of confidence after playing in a previous game and being satisfied with his performance.
"My confidence was kind of low at some point earlier in the season," he said. "Ever since then, my confidence goes up and I play a little better."
Rawdon said his prior lack of confidence came from a scoring slump he has been enduring.
"I was a forward and I wasn't really getting very many scoring opportunities and wasn't contributing too much," he said.
Even his teammates are noticing the improvement in Rawdon's demeanor.
"He's gained a lot of confidence," Eike, who also is Rawdon's roommate, said. "I don't know why. I should know why. He's playing really well — just playing simple, playing hard."
Coach John Klein said Rawdon didn't do anything to warrant him not being in the starting lineup.
"He gets down on himself," Klein said. "And he might not have anything to be down on himself except he was sitting on the bench behind two guys who were putting the ball in the back of the net."
Klein said he is glad to see Rawdon picking up the offensive slack, especially because the Cougars' leading scorer Edgar Reyna did not play became of a hamstring injury.
"Hutchison was hot earlier in the year," he said. "Edgar got hot. I'm really pleased to see Parker stepping up."
Rawdon has another reason to be excited other than his entry in the starting lineup. Eike, who not only notched the Cougar goal Friday night, will turn 21-years-old on Oct. 30th.
"Happy birthday," Rawdon told Eike after the game, while hugging him and making plans to start celebrating with him later that evening.
All of Columbia College might have joined them because Eike came close in the second overtime period to scoring a game-winning goal. Truman State's sophomore goalkeeper Tyler Knierim robbed him from getting his second birthday goal by stopping the shot.
"I should have scored there at the end," Eike said. "I put my head down and blasted it. I probably had more time than I thought I did."
Rawdon, Eike and company finish 10-5-2 on the regular season and will be the third seed in the upcoming American Midwest Conference tournament.