Herd Men's Soccer Finishes Regular Season With 2-1 Win Over Radford.
HUNTINGTON, W. Va. - Jeremy Ashe (Cinnaminson, NJ) scored on a great pass from Karim Boukhemis (Huntington, WV) to give the Thundering Herd men's soccer team a 2-1 lead which it would be able to hold on to and defeat Radford, 2-1, Sunday at Sam Hood Field.
"This is a nice win for us heading into the Mid-American Conference Tournament," Marshall coach Bob Gray said. "Hopefully this gives us some momentum heading into the tournament."
Early on, the game was a defensive struggle with both teams having limited opportunities. There were only nine shots taken in the first half with Marshall (10-7-2, 3-2-1 MAC) having five and Radford (6-5-4) having four.
Radford seemed to have the better chances in the half, and with two and a half minutes left, they struck first, taking a 1-0 lead. Ramon Negron slipped a pass through two defenders to find Tyler Leveski, who scored on a short breakaway.
Marshall picked up their game in the second half, and 20 minutes in tied the game up. Jeremy Ashe was streaking in from the left side and made a perfect pass to Nicholas Ademolu (Windsor, Ont.), who put the ball in the back of the net to tie it up.
The Herd gained momentum from the goal, and just seven minutes later capitalized on it, taking a 2-1 lead. This time, Karim Boukhemis was coming down the right side and made another great pass to Ashe who scored what would later be the game winner.
Radford had a chance to tie the game back up with about five minutes left when the ball was loose in front of the Marshall goal, but a Marshall defender was able to clear the ball and the Highlanders were unable to muster up any more offense as the Herd held them off for its tenth win of the season.
This marked the first win for Marshall against the Highlanders. Prior to today's game, Radford held a 4-0-2 edge over the Herd.
Goalie Joe Nebel (Brentwood, TN) had another solid game for the Herd making two saves on three Highlander shots on goal.
MU had a strong second half, recording seven shots to four by Radford. The Herd out-shot Radford, 12-8 for the game. Ademolu, Ashe and Mike Barbera (Huntington, WV) each had two shots to lead the team.
Men's soccer finishes the regular season with a 10-7-2 record, the best record since 2001 when they went 12-7. Boukhemis finishes as the leading scorer with 16 point (seven goals and two assists). His seven goals was also the top performance for MU.
The four seniors for Marshall, Firas Al-Samarraie (Malmoe, Sweden), Barbera, Salvador Djeukeng (Yaounde, Cameroon) and Craig Hettlinger (Barboursville, WV) were honored prior to today's game.
Firas finished the regular season as the third leading scorer with 11 points on four goals and three assists. Djeukeng had his second solid season for the Herd, notching four goals and two assists. Barbera finished off another stellar season on defense and also scored his first career goal against Pittsburgh. Craig Hettlinger, who finished up his second stint at Marshall, had a solid season on defense, playing in 14 games.
On Friday, the Herd will make its final trip to the MAC Tournament. Marshall enters the tournament as the fifth seed and will face host Western Michigan in the final game of the day on Friday at 3 p.m.. The tournament will take place at the WMU Soccer Complex in Kalamazoo, MI.
The other games will see #3 Northern Illinois facing #6 Buffalo in the opener at 9 a.m. and second seed Akron facing #7 Bowling Green at noon. Top seed Kentucky has a bye for the first round.
Log on to www.HerdZone.com for an update on the Herd throughout the MAC Tournament.