Two Second Half Goals Lift Tigers Over WKU, 2-1
Sept. 10, 2004
After a slow, sluggish start, the University of Memphis men's soccer team (2-1-0) beat Western Kentucky University (1-2-0), 2-1, with two quick second period goals on Friday at Mike Rose Stadium.
The Tigers struggled early with game control, but warmed up in the final 10 minutes of the first half, paving the way for their two goals in the second.
"We didn't get into a pattern until the end of the first half," said Memphis head coach Richie Grant. "We showed at the end of the first half the way we wanted to play. That was the focus on our half time talk, to play with more tempo and get the ball out wide."
In front of 533 fans, Memphis junior midfielder Dayton O'Brien scored his second goal of the season in the 63rd minute. The preseason all-conference made his 14th career goal off a cross from Andy Metcalf to the right side. O'Brien then hit it to the left of the box past WKU goalie Kyle Schroeder.
Three minutes later, freshman Marcus McCarty scored his first collegiate goal to put Memphis up 2-0. McCarty scored on a header off a hard cross from the right side by senior team captain Daniel Dobson.
The first shot of the game came in the 20th minute by Tigers' Harrison Kiser as the U of M went on to outshoot the Hilltoppers seven to four in the first half and 12 to 10 in the game. Memphis best chance to score came in the 39th minute when the Tigers put up four shots in a minute's time. The period ended with both teams scoreless.
The Hilltoppers came within one with a goal by Richard Mupfudze in the 76th minute. Daniel Payne dropped the ball to Mupfudze from 30 yards out for the junior's first goal of the season. Western Kentucky then came close to tying the game with 2:26 minutes left, getting off two shots in a row inside the box. A team save kept the Hilltoppers from scoring.
"Their style is to get the ball into your box," Grant said. "It's always good to experience protecting a one goal lead, but at the same time, we were disappointed to make it that close."
Memphis senior keeper Sebastian Vecchio improved his record to 2-1-0. Vecchio had four saves in the game.
Next up for the Tigers is the Vanderbilt Puma Classic hosted by Vanderbilt in Nashville, Tenn. Memphis will play Eastern Illinois at 6 p.m. on Friday followed by the tournament host on Sunday at 2 p.m. Both games can be followed through live stats. A link to the live stats can be found on the men's soccer schedule page at www.gotigersgo.com.