After losing a heartbreaker Friday afternoon, the UW mens soccer team (3-1) came back Sunday to defeat the Oakland Grizzlies 2-1. The Badgers finished the UW-Milwaukee Panther Classic with a record of 1-1.
UW junior Reid Johnson (Mequon, Wis.) scored the game-winning goal his first of the season in the 55th minute of play off assists from Matthew Jelacic (Brookfield, Wis.) and Erik Ortega (Western Springs, Ill.).
Giving the Badgers the early lead was sophomore Dirk Pearson, who scored off a centering pass from captain Aaron Hohlbein in the 29th minute. Oaklands Chris Edwards tied the game early in the second half, scoring off an assist from Brady Vance.
The Badgers were out-shot 15-12 by Oakland, and even with only two shots on goal, the Badgers were able to score on both shots to secure the victory.
Looking at the stats, we had two shots on goal and two goals, so that's not bad, said head coach Jeff Rohrman. I would have liked to see more us be more efficient with our shots and get more on goal. I thought we did well with the few chances we had. This game was really a test of our depth with how hot and humid it was and the level of play in the game.
Wisconsin goal keeper Jake Settle (Cedar Rapids, Wis.) recorded six saves on seven shots, to help the Badger defense continue its strong season. The Badger defense has only allowed four goals in four games.
It will be an unbelievable atmosphere next week [playing at New Mexico], said Rohrman. I wouldn't be surprised if there are 5,000 people in the stands. It will great to test ourselves against one of the best teams in the country. A lot of our guys have had experiences, whether in this country or abroad, that will have prepared them for the large numbers in the stands. There may be a few jitters before the game, but I think when the whistle blows our guys will just focus in on the game and play.
The All-Tournament team included Wisoconsin's Kenny Dix and Aaron Hohlbein, UW-Milwaukee's Dale Weiler, Chris Lins, Steve Bode and goal keeper Eric Mickschl, Oakland's Chris Edwards and Doran Drai and Fairleigh Dickinson's Donny Mayard, Pino Tubito and Yanni Rome Gosselin who was the tournament's MVP.
The Badger men will be in action next on Friday Sept. 16 at 8 p.m. as they take on No. 3 ranked New Mexico at the Nike/TLC Plumbing and Utilities Invite in Albuquerque, N.M.