The Midway Raiders traveled to Lakewood Wednesday, hoping to build on their 3-0 record. The Leopards had other ideas. Lakewood came from behind to post a 2-1 victory, avenging last week’s 3-1 loss at Midway.
The Raiders got on the board first. Jonathan Garcia, for the second game in a row, scored Midway’s only goal. It came with 13:11 remaining in the first half. 1-0 would be the score at intermission.
For the first 11 and a half minutes of the second half, the defensive struggle continued. Finally, with 28:21 left to play, Francis Florez hit pay dirt on a penalty kick, knotting the score at 1.
It stayed tied for almost 20 minutes. At the 8:50 mark, Florez found the back of the goal on an assist by Lloosman Zabala, giving the Leopards a 2-1 lead. The Raiders had some shots on goal after that, but could not score.
“I challenged the team before the game,” explained Lakewood coach Jay Faircloth. “I said, look, I’ve never beat Midway, and I want this. Don’t get me wrong. I respect that man (Coach McLamb). I’ve learned a lot just watching him coach. But we just wanted it more.”
Leopard goalkeeper Pate Holland had 9 saves in the game.
Coach Faircloth said he used the Rocky quote on his team before the game:
“It’s not how many times you get knocked down. It’s how many times you get up.”
“They came ready to play and we didn’t play very well and we got what we deserved,” remarked Raider coach Allen McLamb. “We tried to switch some things on the field and nobody responded very well.”
The Leopards are now 2-2 and will begin conference play next Wednesday at Spring Creek. Midway falls to 3-1. After hosting Rosewood on Thursday, Midway will travel to Triton on September 4.