Midway men’s soccer upsets No. 20 Union
The Midway University men’s soccer team completed many firsts in its first season, but on Tuesday, Sept. 12, in Barbourville, the Eagles added to the list when they defeated a ranked team for the first time in program history. Midway did the unthinkable as they went toe-toe with No. 20 Union College. The Eagles got two goals from Brad Wilson and another from Callum Kemp – which proved to be the game-winner – as Midway defeated the Bulldogs (2-3-1) by a final score of 3-2. “To go on the road and knock off a ranked team is a huge deal for our program,” noted Coach Tim Wolz. “Tonight was by far our best game of the season, and the result showed. The whole team stepped up and played really well tonight.” It was a rough start to the season for the Eagles, as they had been outscored 14-0 in their first two matches, but since then, Midway has outscored its opponents 4-2 en route to bringing its record back to .500. After the first 15 minutes went by scoreless, it looked like the Eagles took a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute off a free kick from Wilson. The Doncaster, England, native stepped up and struck a free kick from about 30 yards out as it look destined for goal, but the ball deflected off the crossbar. About 17 minutes later in the 32nd minute, Wilson wasn’t going to be denied again. The Eagles were granted a free kick from about 27 yards out after Evan Sakamaki (Georgetown, Ind.) was taken down from behind. The senior hit it low and hard at the near post, slipping it past the Union defense and past the diving goalkeeper and into the back of the net to give Midway the 1-0 lead. The 1-0 lead stood as the two teams headed to the locker room. Just a few minutes after halftime in the 62nd minute, Wilson was at it again. This time he took a corner kick and he curved it around the near post and past the goalkeeper into the back of the net to stretch the Midway lead to 2-0. After Union got a goal back in the 65th minute, Callum Kemp struck in the 74th minute to push Midway’s lead to 3-1. On a counterattack, Wilson found the Lincoln, England, native behind the defense as Kemp struck it from about 50 yards out and watched as it sailed over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net for his first goal of the season. Union cut the Midway lead to 3-2 after they scored with about four minutes remaining. The final minutes were tense ones for the Eagles, as the Bulldogs had a couple of shots and a corner kick, but Midway’s defense stood tall as the Eagles held on for the 3-2 victory. Midway goalkeeper Christian Neira allowed two goals, but was lights-out otherwise. The senior from Santiago, Chile, finished with 10 saves and grabbed his second win of the season. The Bulldogs dominated shots-wise, but Midway took better care of their opportunities. Union held a 17-7 advantage in shots and a 12-4 edge in shots on goal, but it was Midway that walked away with the 3-2 victory. The Eagles began a four-game home stand when they hosted No. 14 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) on Tuesday, Sept. 19. The home stand continues on Saturday, Sept. 23, when they host Shawnee State (Ohio) at 2 p.m. at the Midway Soccer Field.