MILWAUKEE - The Milwaukee men's soccer team overcame an early goal by Eastern Illinois to earn a 1-1 draw Sunday afternoon at Engelmann Stadium.
The Panthers (1-0-1) completely dominated the visiting Panthers (0-0-2) on the scoresheet, outshooting the visitors by a count of 28-to-6, but had to settle for the tie after 110 minutes of action.
Before most of the crowd even sat down following the anthem, EIU netted a goal just 14 seconds into the afternoon.
"Fourteen seconds into the game … it's not an ideal start, especially against a team that we know is going to come to defend," Milwaukee head coach Kris Kelderman said. "We knew exactly what their game plan was. And to allow a team to score a goal 14 seconds into the game, makes it even harder for yourself."
Dazed, but not rattled, Milwaukee recorded the next 10 shots of the first half, finding a way to tie by the 13th minute.
Jaime Colin battled along the endline, sending a cross into the goal front. Evan Conway got a foot on it to redirect back, where a rushing Vuk Latinovich was there to bury the one-timer with his right foot and square the match back up.
"The guys responded well," Kelderman said. "We scored pretty quickly, which is very good. We created a lot of good chances in the first half. We got in there at halftime thinking 'we should be ahead, but that's OK, we have 45 minutes to go'. Played another 45, created a lot of chances – stats aren't everything in the game of soccer, but tonight they said a lot. We just weren't sharp enough in that final third; tonight it just wasn't good enough to get the W."
Latinovich just missed a brace in the 37th, with Mike Novotny making one of his seven first-half saves to keep it 1-1. Thibault Ceulemans nearly did the opposite of EIU, almost sneaking one in seconds before the halftime horn, only to miss just left on a redirect back in front of goal at 44:38.
Evan Conway broke free in the 48th minute, running onto a great cross from Colin off service from midfield by Magnus Flaatedal. Conway's shot was past the keeper, but went banging off the left post and away from goal.
It was all Milwaukee. Flaatedal had a nice look on a header off a free kick from Latinovich in the 59th, but again, just wide.
Novotny made the play of the day in the 86th, somehow stopping a Nick Moon header by having his arm in the right place at the right time off Moon's attempt in front.
The skies opened up as the game went past regulation, with a heavy downpour sending the fans scrambling for cover. Both teams had a shot apiece in the first overtime. In the second OT, Milwaukee outshot EIU 4-1, but the last header from Moon as the clock ran out dribbled slowly to the right of the far post.
In addition to the overwhelming shot advantage, UWM also had all eight of the contest's corner kicks. The team was also whistled for 21 of the 40 fouls, in a match that included seven yellow cards.
Latinovich and Moon each recorded a game-high seven shots. Conway had six. Freddy Lorenzen made a trio of saves in his 110-minutes of play.
Up next, the team hits the road for the first time, traveling to Evansville, Ind., for the ProRehab Aces Soccer Classic. First game is Friday against the host, set to start at 7 p.m.