Panthers Come Up Empty In Tough Loss At Wright State
Oct. 27, 2012
DAYTON, Ohio - Seth Petrey scored in the 55th minute and Wright State University held on from there, handing the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men's soccer team a 1-0 loss at Alumni Field Saturday evening.
The Panthers (7-7-2, 1-3-2 Horizon League) outshot the Raiders (4-11-1, 2-3-1) but could not find the back of the net, falling in a game that would have clinched them a spot in the upcoming Horizon League Tournament with a victory.
Following a scoreless half, the Raiders struck for the deciding goal at the 54:19 mark, as Petrey carried the ball past midfield and all the way to goal, sending the ball into the back of the net for his first score of the season.
"I thought we were a bit flat in the first half and I am not sure why," Milwaukee head coach Kris Kelderman said. "It was a big game for both teams and we all knew that coming into the match. It showed in their effort, but I don't think it necessarily showed in ours from the beginning. I think it got better as the game went on, but at the end of the day, I think Wright State was a bit better than us tonight."
The Panthers kept up the pressure the rest of the half, recording 11 of the 17 shots the rest of the way. They did have one last final push following a throw-in from the sidelines with 15 seconds left, but the final attempt as time expired went high.
UWM also had a pair of free kicks from dangerous spots in the 73rd and 76th minutes, but the first attempt was high and the second was right at the WSU keeper, who easily made the save.
"We were not dangerous enough in the final third," Kelderman said. "We get shots off but the question is, were they quality shots and opportunities? Are we composed in the front of the goal? The past few weeks we haven't been and we have been struggling with that. It's frustrating, but we have one more game to go and need to make the most of that opportunity."
Jacob Bye was credited with six saves in earning the shutout and senior John Shakon made eight saves of his own. UWM ended up outshooting WSU 17-to-15 on the night and forced five of the six corner kicks. Junior Robbie Boyd and freshman Declan Rodriguez each led the offense with three shots each.
With the loss, the final standings will not be clear until the last match next week. Milwaukee does still control its own destiny, as a victory will send it on to postseason play.
"Nobody said this was going to be easy," Kelderman said. "We could have made it much easier on ourselves with a different result tonight, but the good sign is that we have another crack at it."
The first half did not feature much on the offensive side as far as quality opportunities go for the Panthers. The team recorded six shots, but forced just a pair of easy saves for the WSU keeper.
Shakon stayed busy all half, making six saves total including a pair of impressive stops that game the contest deadlocked at zeroes.
In the 13th minute Justin Laird nearly put the Raiders on the board. A header redirected a serve back in front, where Laird was just a few feet away from Shakon with his header attempt. He reacted quickly enough to pop the ball up and off the cross bar and back in to play.
Wright State ended the half with nine shots, including the final attempt that nearly snuck into the corner of the goal as the horn sounded to end the first. A defensive mistake on a long ball allowed a wide-open last-second chance by WSU, but Shakon dove and got just enough of it to slide past the far post as the clock hit zero for intermission.
The Panthers will close out the regular season with a final home game against Valparaiso University Saturday. Join the team as it honors the three seniors in a pregame ceremony prior to the 7 p.m. start time.