The Wisconsin Men’s Soccer Team (2-10-2, 0-4-1) dropped another tight game last Friday against Big Ten leader Penn State (8-2-2, 4-1-1). After falling in a 2–0 hole, the Badgers showed they still had some fight left in them by responding with a 79th-minute goal. While this goal narrowed the lead to one, their comeback effort came up short and the team failed yet again to win their first conference game.

With only three left in the regular season, Wisconsin needs to buckle down and finish strong to avoid being winless in conference play. The quest for the team’s first conference win starts Friday when the Badgers travel to Ann Arbor to take on Michigan.

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The Wolverines (7-4-3, 2-1-2), have had a successful 2019 campaign. After a trying week — in which the team lost games to No. 4 Indiana and as well as underdog Western Michigan — the Wolverines responded nicely Tuesday in a road win against rival Notre Dame.

In a tightly contested game, Michigan scored in the final minutes after graduate student forward Nebosja Popovic rifled a penalty kick past the keeper’s mitts. The goal was Popovic’s 8th in the year, the most anyone in the Big Ten has scored all season.

After an illustrious three-year career at the University of Oakland, Popovich came to Michigan as a graduate transfer. The Rochester, Michigan native has been the centerpiece of Michigan’s attack and has taken the Big Ten by storm.

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The Badgers — led in part by goalkeeper Dean Cowdroy — will look to neutralize Popovich and the Wolverine offensive arsenal.

Traveling away from McClimon Complex has been a nightmare for the Badgers all season. Not only will Wisconsin look for their first conference win Friday but also for their first road win of the season. The squad is 0-4 in true road games, being outscored by a score of 8–1.

A glimmer of light in the Badgers otherwise gloomy season has been sophomore, Matthew Comiskey. Although Comiskey started the season as a part-time contributor, he has made the most out of his role by scoring two goals on the season, tied for the most on the team.

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Over the past two games, Comiskey has seen an increase in his role, playing over nearly 150 minutes the last two games en route to his second goal of the season against Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. In Saturday’s affair against Penn State, Comiskey contributed yet again by assisting on Wisconsin’s lone goal of the match.

With only three games left, time is running out on the Badgers’ season. If the team wants to get a conference win, they will need to buckle down and battle these feisty Big Ten opponents. Following their matchup against Michigan, Wisconsin returns home for senior night against Northwestern Oct. 30.