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Willmar advances to 2A semis

NEW ULM -- The Willmar boys soccer team held its ground despite a quick New Ulm score to win its Section 2A quarterfinal match 2-1 Saturday.

The Cardinals (12-8) will play at No. 1-seed Mankato East Tuesday in the semifinals.

New Ulm took only 12 seconds to put a goal on the scoreboard from Matti Miller.

"On the kickoff, they kicked it long down the right wing, which no one else has done to us this season," said Willmar coach Richard Courtney. "He was able to get to the ball before any of our defenders, dribbled through a couple of them. It caught us unaware."

But Willmar tied the game in the 25th minute on Abdinasir Abdi's goal, on a high, cross pass from James Neis. Trent Fader scored the game-winner less than two minutes later on a header off a pass from Neis.

There was no scoring in the second half.

"We played an excellent second half," said Courtney. "They had only one or two decent chances to score. We passed the ball well and controlled the play well."

The time for the Willmar-Mankato East game has not been determined. The Cardinals lost to Mankato East 3-1 on Aug. 23.

Willmar 2, New Ulm 1

Willmar 2 0 -- 2

New Ulm 1 0 -- 1

FIRST HALF - NU: Matti Miller (Dylan Smith) 0:12 ... Wil: Abdinasir Abdi (James Neis) 25:49 ... Wil: Trent Fader (Neis) 27:38

SECOND HALF - no scoring

Shots on goal - Willmar: 12 ... New Ulm: 6

Goalie saves - Willmar: Steve Kluver 5 ... New Ulm: Brandon Dietz 10