AKRON - The University of Akron scored a pair of goals just 1:29 apart late in the first half, en route to a 2-0 win over the Bowling Green State University men's soccer team Friday night (Nov. 9). The match, a Mid-American Conference Tournament semifinal-round contest, was held at UA's FirstEnergy Stadium – Cub Cadet Field.
With the win, the Zips improve to 16-1-2 on the season. Akron, the number-one seed for the league tournament as well as the number-one team in the national polls, has won 13 consecutive matches. Akron will face Northern Illinois in Sunday's MAC Tournament championship match. NIU downed West Virginia, 1-0, in the first semifinal of the day.
BGSU sees the season come to an end with a record of 8-9-3.
The Zips had the Falcon defense under tremendous pressure for most of the night, but junior goalkeeper Michael Wiest and the BG backs kept the hosts off of the scoreboard for nearly all of the first half. But, the Zips broke through shortly before the intermission.
With just over five minutes remaining in the period, UA's Wil Trapp blasted a shot from approximately 35 yards out that found the right side of the net, giving the Zips a lead they would not relinquish.
Only 89 seconds later, the Zips struck again. Scott Caldwell, who had assisted on Trapp's goal, picked up another assist. Caldwell, stationed on the right side of the 18-yard box, played a pass forward to Thomas Schmitt, who ran onto the ball and hit a one-time shot across his body and into the far (left) side of the net.
That was all the scoring the Zips would need. Akron peppered Wiest and the Falcon backliners with a season-high total of 33 shots on the night, but the hosts would not find the back of the net again.
For the match, the Zips had a 33-2 advantage in total shots, and a 9-1 margin in shots on goal. Wiest made six stops on the night, and the Falcons also had a 'team save' as a BG defender blocked a Dillon Serna shot on the goal line.
The Falcons, as mentioned, see the season come to an end with a record of 8-9-3. BGSU's win total was the Falcons' highest since 2003.
Coach Eric Nichols and the Falcons lose just three players off of this season's 25-man roster, as seniors Sean Hastings, Zach Lemke and Chris McLean saw their collegiate careers come to an end.