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Boys soccer: Sartell edges Willmar on late goal

Tribune photo by Tom Larson Willmar forward Ezequiel Gomez (9) crosses over against Sartell’s Tim Levandowski during the first half of a Central Lakes Conference match Tuesday at Kennedy School. Sartell scored in the 75th minute to down the Cardinals 1-0.

WILLMAR — A goal late in the game was the only thing the Willmar and Sartell boys soccer teams didn’t have in common on Tuesday.

The Sabres’ Kyle Erickson scored the game’s only goal in the 75th minute in a match played in a strong wind under overcast skies at Kennedy School.

Both teams entered the match tied with the Hmong Academy at No. 18 in the state.

Both teams had 16 shots on goal and both narrowly missed good scoring chances throughout the match.

Sartell improved to 4-0-1 in the Central Lakes Conference and 6-1-1 overall. The Sabres are unbeaten in their last seven matches.

Willmar fell to 2-2-1 in the CLC and 5-3-1 overall, but the Cardinals have five wins and a tie in their last eight matches.

“I was pleased with how we played,” said Cardinals head coach Jeff Winter. “We seem to play to the level of the team we’re playing.”

Willmar played a bit lethargic in a 2-1 win over Marshall on Monday and Winter said he feared the attitude would carry over into Tuesday’s conference match.

Instead, the Cardinals were on top of their game.

“They played hard the whole game,” Winter said. “They played their hearts out.”

Willmar hit the post once in the second half and Teza Harrison hit the crossbar on a free kick late in the first half. Two other Cardinal shots missed just wide, Winter said.

Willmar goalie Charlie Trochlil made 15 saves and Sartell’s Colin Johnson got the win, making 16 saves.

The Cardinals play next at Sauk Rapids at 5 p.m. on Thursday.

Sartell 1, Willmar 0

Sartell (4-0-1 6-1-1)           0 1 — 1

Willmar (2-2-1 5-3-1)        0 0 — 0

FIRST HALF – No scoring

SECOND HALF – S: Kyle Erickson 75:00

SHOTS ON GOAL – Sartell: 16 … Willmar: 16

GOALIE SAVES – Sartell: Colin Erickson 16 … Willmar: Charlie Trochlil 15