The Midway Raiders soccer team opened Four County Conference play Monday with a match against new conference rival East Bladen. The Eagles, coached by Jay Raynor, have traditionally maintained a solid soccer program. They are coming off an 8-9-4 season last year. The Raiders and their head Allen McLamb were looking to protect home turf.
The game was a defensive struggle. The only goal of the game was scored by Raider Jonathon Garcia at the 5:29 mark of the half. Jackson Carr provided the assist on the play.
After intermission, both teams came out with determination. Five minutes into the second half, it appeared that the Raiders had scored again. However, the would be goal by Faustino Espino was nullified due to an off sides call. “Our guys got caught sitting back in the box and not moving out with the defense,” explained McLamb.
Both teams had numerous shots on goal in the second half, but neither could hit pay dirt. By game’s end, both teams were nursing injuries, and both had received yellow cards.
“I really think we played on our end of the field more than they did,” attested McLamb. “I give my guys credit for pushing the ball and when it came time Junior made some real good saves in the goal. We fixed some things in the second half to protect us and got more shots on goal, we just didn’t hit on it frame.” McLamb went on to commend the work of East Bladen goalie Matthew Massengill.
The Raiders improve to 3-1-2 overall and 1-0 in conference play. The Eagles, with their first loss, fall to 3-1-1. Midway will travel to Pender Wednesday, while East Bladen visits Clinton.