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Willmar remains unbeaten after wild win over Apollo

ST. CLOUD -- The Willmar boys soccer team won its third-straight game thanks to a big night from Jesus Nevarez on Thursday. Nevarez scored three goals and assisted on two in a 5-3 win over St. Cloud Apollo. The Cardinals improved to 3-0 and have ...

ST. CLOUD - The Willmar boys soccer team won its third-straight game thanks to a big night from Jesus Nevarez on Thursday.

Nevarez scored three goals and assisted on two in a 5-3 win over St. Cloud Apollo.

The Cardinals improved to 3-0 and have scored 12 goals in their victories.

Nevarez scored the match's first goal, then converted twice on penalty kicks and teammates Blake Hisken and Sakawe Shadoor both were pulled down in the box.

Fernando Zavala and Abdi Hakim Abdi scored Willmar's other goals. Hisken and Shadoor both were credited with assists on the penalty kicks on a new rule change this year.

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"Wow, what a match," Willmar head coach Jeff Winter said. "Their only defense against Jesus-he was the fastest guy on the field-was to take him down."

The teams traded goals in a wild first half. In addition to the penalty kick goal, Apollo's Noah Kramer scored the game-tying goal on a throw-in that was touched before it went into the net.

Winter said the two schools have played physical matches in the past but the play was clean on Thursday.

"The regs did a nice job keeping the match under control," Winter said. "We've had a history with St. Cloud Apollo, but there was no animosity."

What does exist early in the season is a cohesive, confident Willmar team, he said.

"We've had a great start," said Winter, whose team plays Sartell at home at 5 p.m. Tuesday at Kennedy Field. "This is a really fun team to coach right now."

Willmar 5, St. Cloud Apollo 3

Willmar................. 3 2 - 5

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St. Cloud Apollo................... 3 0 - 3

FIRST HALF - W: Jesus Nevarez 1st minute ... SCA: Logan Lommel 14th minute ... W: Nevarez (Blake Hisken, PK) 17th minute ... SCA: Abass Mohamed 25th minute ... W: Fernando Zavala (Nevarez) 36th minute ... SCA: Noah Kramer 38th minute

SECOND HALF - W: Nevarez (Sakawe Shadoor, PK) 44th minute ... W: Abdi Hakim Abdi (Nevarez) 68th minute

SHOTS ON GOAL - W: 17 ... SCA: 13

GOALIE SAVES - Willmar: Manny Obregon 10 ... St. Cloud Apollo: Zach Schiltz 12

DEFENSIVE SAVES - None

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