In the battle between two Big Ten powerhouses late Friday night, the University of Wisconsin men’s soccer fell in a hard-fought struggle against their rival, the Michigan Wolverines, 2-1.
Coming into the game after with a disappointing start to the season, the Badgers were hopeful to continue their recent success in Big Ten play, however, the mMaize and Blue had other plans. Playing their fifth consecutive home game, the Wolverines were determined to extend their early domination having started the season 3-0-1.
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No surprise to anyone, as both these teams have been finding the net plenty early on this season, the scoring opened early as Michigan forward Ivo Cerda flew through the air like a salmon, using his head to guide the ball into the back of the net after only six minutes.
After about 30 minutes of back-and-forth play, Michigan began to bombard the Badger defense relentlessly. Giving their all not to break, the Badgers reluctantly conceded their second goal of the day, as midfield Marc Ybarra put his name on the scoresheet after an easy tap in off of a corner kick.
Going into half down 2-0, Badgers coach John Trask was determined to have his troops prepared and ready for an improved second half. At the beginning of the second half, Wisconsin was in need of a quick answer as they had dug themselves into a 2-0 hole.
After some rough play from both sides, an unlikely source finally put the Badgers on the board in the 85th minute. Badger goalkeeper Phillipp Schilling stepped up to take a free kick from an absurd 65 yards out and netted it. While it would go on to be the Badgers’ lone goal, it held sentimental value, as the goal was Schilling’s first goal as a member of the Wisconsin team.
While the game did not provide a favorable outcome for the Red and White, coach Trask was not entirely discouraged. Leading the game in shots 11-8, there were many positive points to build on moving forward. The Badgers now find themselves with a record of 1-1-2, and in desperate need of a win to turn their season around.
The Badgers are scheduled to take on another Big Ten foe in the Northwestern Wildcats this Wednesday.