MARS HILL, N.C. – The Mars Hill men's soccer team collected a 2-1 non-conference win over Lees-McRae on Wednesday, September 28 at the Ammons Family Athletic Center and Meares Stadium. The Lions improved to 4-4 overall, while the Bobcats fell to 2-7.
After several shots missed the mark in the first few minutes, Mars Hill finally got on the board at the 24:18 mark. Defender Derek Kaple sent a beautiful ball into the box from about 20 yards out that Oscar Mitchell headed into the upper-right hand corner of the cage to give the Lions a 1-0 lead.
LMC tried to knot the match late in the first half, but keeper Ben Lucas made two incredible saves, including one from his backside, to send the Blue and Gold into the locker room with the one-goal lead.
Lees-McRae was presented a perfect chance to tie the game just minutes into the second frame, but Mitchell proved that he could do it on both sides of the ball, kicking away a potential game-tying goal that had snuck by Lucas.
However, at the 31:19 mark the Bobcats were given a penalty shot following a foul in the box by the Lions. Thomas Deeley took full advantage of the freebie and blasted a ball past Lucas to knot the match at 1-1.
The tie would not last long as Mars Hill earned a penalty kick of its own just 10 minutes later when the Bobcats' goalie was assessed a yellow card for a hard foul in the box. Ian Wu stepped in and collected his third score of the season to reclaim the lead for MHU.
Wu's goal would ultimately be the game winner as the Lions played great defense down the stretch to hold off the Bobcats.
Mars Hill held a slight advantage on shots, edging the Bobcats 11-9, while LMC took three corners to the Lions two. Lucas played all 90 minutes in goal, picking up his first win on the season.
The Lions will be back in action on Saturday, October 1 as they travel to Hartsville, S.C. to take on the Coker Cobras in South Atlantic Conference action. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.