Three Second-Half Goals Power UWM Past Omaha
Oct. 2, 2013
OMAHA, Neb. - Junior Laurie Bell, sophomore Aaron Horvat and senior James Ashcroft each scored in the second half to send the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men's soccer team to a 3-1 victory over the University of Nebraska Omaha Wednesday afternoon at the UNO Soccer Field.
The Panthers (8-0-1) trailed for the first time at the half all season after the Mavericks (2-6-1) scored on a penalty kick in the 42nd minute. But, three goals in a span of less than 10 minutes in the second half extended the team's best start to a season since 1985.
"I thought we got off to a little bit of a slow start," UWM head coach Kris Kelderman said. "I thought Omaha came at us with a lot of energy the first 20 minutes of the game and I thought we had a tough time. I think we got to the point where they got a PK and a goal and it gave us a little wake-up call. The guys picked it up a notch and from that point we started taking over the game with our possession and energy."
Bell ended the night with a goal and an assist, as Milwaukee improved to 5-0-0 on the road and remains one of just nine unbeaten teams still standing at the NCAA Division I level.
"I thought we finished off the first half well and missed a couple of really good chances that we could have scored," Kelderman said. "We regrouped and talked at halftime and came out strong and the game changed from there."
Following a lackluster first half, Bell found the equalizer on a penalty kick for the Panthers, slotting it home from the spot at the 65:21 mark for his sixth of the campaign.
"I think as soon as we got that first goal - that was big for us," Kelderman said. "It rewarded our efforts and it kept going. I felt we did a good job pressuring their back line and our chances started to increase. We got two goals and felt like we could have had a few more."
Milwaukee kept up the pressure looking for the go-ahead strike. Freshman Beau Laufer rifled a shot in the 67th minute wide, followed by one from sophomore Declan Rodriguez in the 69th minute that was saved nicely by the UNO keeper.
Just over four minutes later, Bell found Horvat for a breakaway, with Horvat finishing for his second-straight game-winning goal at the 69:46 mark, his fifth goal of the season.
The team did not stop there, with Ashcroft making it 3-1 when he scored from a tough angle from near the sideline in the 75th minute.
The defense played well all game, limiting the Mavericks to just four shots on goal, with freshman keeper Liam Anderson recording saves on all but the PK.
"Once again, I think it was a solid defensive effort," Kelderman said. "As far as solid scoring opportunities go for them, I think there were very few. It's another game where we got a good result on the road. The guys stepped up and got a well-deserved result."
For the contest, UWM held advantages of 15-to-9 in shots - including 8-to-4 in shots on goal - and 6-to-1 in corner kicks.
The Panthers look for their next victory Saturday, hosting Wright State at Engelmann Stadium. The game against the Raiders is set for a 7 p.m. kickoff.