The Willmar boys soccer team found a rather odd way to keep its undefeated season intact.
An own goal by St. Cloud Apollo in the 68th minute put the Cardinals ahead for good for the win at Apollo High School.
“We were putting good pressure on and they made a bad pass and their goalie misplayed it,” said Willmar head coach Jeff Winter. “We forced it, but we didn’t score it.”
The ninth-ranked (Class AA) Cardinals are 11-0-1 with the victory.
“We talked at halftime that we were a little overconfident and they were clearly a different team and a better team than last time,” Winter said. Willmar beat Apollo 8-1 on Aug. 31.
“Our captains were talking to the guys about not wanting to lose their zero in the loss column. We scored early in the second half and that definitely made the difference.”
Abdullahi Mohamud got that game-tying, second-half goal at the 54th minute, with an assist going to Jemil Osman. Mohamud also had a goal in the 17th minute. Osman scored the game’s first goal in the 10th minute.
Andrew Ziebarth made five saves in net for the Cardinals.
“It’s always tough to play at Apollo,” Winter said. “I don’t know what it is, but it’s always a close game and typically high scoring. … In the end, the kids rose to the challenge.
“I’m proud that our guys didn’t give up after being up 2-0, then down 3-2. It’s not typically the way a game goes. We were able to keep our heads and end up finishing it out.”
Willmar returns to Hodapp Field for a 5 p.m. match Tuesday against Sartell.
Willmar 4, Apollo 3
Willmar (11-0-1)..................... 2 2 — 4
St. Cloud Apollo (6-4)........... 3 0 — 3
FIRST HALF – (1) W Jemil Osman (Jordy Contreras) 10th minute … (2) W: Abdullahi Mohamud (Anthony Reyes Jimenez) 17th minute … (3) A: Evan Sufka 19th minute PK … (4) A: Name unavailable 25th minute … (5) A: Name unavailable 34th minute
SECOND HALF – (6) W: Mohamud (Osman) 54th minute … (7) W: Own goal (68th minute)
SHOTS ON GOAL – W: 9. A: 8
GOALIE SAVES – W: Andrew Ziebarth, 5 saves … A: Dylan Coulter, 5 saves
Cathedral 5, Minnewaska 1
Matthew Windfeldt scored two goals and Kevin Sanz, Joe Torborg and Zach Plante had one goal apiece in St. Cloud Cathedral’s victory over Minnewaska at Whitney Park in St. Cloud.
Isaac Koening scored a goal for Minnewaska. An assist went to Ethan Quelle on the play.
Minnewaska plays Little Falls in its next match at 5 p.m. Thursday in Glenwood.
Minnewaska (5-4)............................... 0 1 — 1
St. Cloud Cathedral (8-2)................... 3 2 — 5
SHOTS ON GOAL – M: 7. C: 14
GOALIE SAVES – M: Hunter Kloos, 9 … C: Palmer Minnette, 6
CCS 3, Rochester Home 3
Community Christian School of Willmar came back from a one-goal halftime deficit to get a draw against Rochester Home Schools at Caswell Park in North Mankato.
Will Chapin had a pair of goals while Landon Holmgren tacked on another goal for the Eagles. Eduardo Montejano was credited with an assist. In net, goalkeeper Juan Ramirez came up with eight saves.