Yellow Jackets Sting Cougars in Final Minutes
It took 87 minutes to determine the winner of an intense Great Northwest Athletic Conference matchup Thursday night between the University of Sioux Falls and Montana State University men's soccer teams, but someone had to win and the Yellow Jackets came out on top. With three minutes remaining, MSUB's Joshua Marocchi scored the game's only goal to give the visiting team their second win in conference play.
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The Yellow Jakcets improve to 5-2-1 (2-2-1, GNAC) on the year, while the Cougars drop to 1-7 (1-4, GNAC).
Both teams had a couple of solid chances in the first half, where USF recorded four shots to five by MSUB. However, much of the opening period was a defensive battle, as just when one team put the other under pressure, the defense would step in and close that window of opportunity.
The game remained 0-0 at the break.
Fans saw a lot of the same in the second half. There were scoring opportunities, but it was consistenly followed by better defense. As the game went on, the Cougars tried closing the deal and were able to line up three different header opportunities but none were on target.
As time wound down you could see a sense of urgency on both sidelines. In the final 16 minutes, the Yellow Jackets fired five shots and in the 87th minute they got one through. Kyle Emerick beat a USF defender to the corner of the box and crossed a perfect pass Marocchi, who tapped leaving USF with very little time to work with.
MSUB simply played keep away until the buzzer for a nail-biting 1-0 win.
With their late second period push, the Yellow Jackets finished with a 13-8 shot advantage over USF, including a 4-2 margin in kicks on target.
Ryan Keohane led the Cougars with two shots total, while Shefte and Brice Holiday each tallied one. Keohane and Shefte each placed one on net.
Kyle Simons made his eighthth start in net for USF tonight. He finished with three saves in 90 minutes of play.
USF will have one day off then get back to it Saturday, September 29 when they host Northwest Nazarene at 3:30 p.m.