Cougars Victorious in Regular Season Finale
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Matt Polster's goal in the 84th minute Friday night proved the difference as SIUE men's soccer snapped a five-match winless streak with a 2-1 victory over UMKC in the regular season finale for both teams.
"We went into tonight focused on ourselves," SIUE Head Coach Kevin Kalish said. "We just wanted to perform at the highest level possible."
SIUE finishes the regular season with an overall record of 8-7-4. The Cougars already have secured the No. 6 seed in the State Farm Missouri Valley Championships which begins Wednesday at Creighton. SIUE, 1-4-1 in MVC play, will learn its opponent following the conclusion of conference play Saturday.
Polster took a through ball from Jack Twellman before pushing the game-winner past Roos' goalkeeper Kevin Corby to the near post. The goal was the third of the year for the freshman.
"We had a lot of good looks throughout the game," Kalish said. "It was good for Matt to get that one."
Twellman added to his team-leading point total with the assist. The senior now has 21 points on the season.
"Jack's been phenomenal," Kalish said of the senior. "He's been a key player for us all year. I'm proud of the way he has performed on and off the field."
"It was a quality goal," Kalish said. "It was a great service from Aaron, and Derek had the composure in the box to finish."
Luke Harman got the equalizer for the Kangaroos in the 73rd minute hitting a shot from the top of the penalty box past SIUE goalkeeper Scott Meyer. Meyer made two saves to earn the win for SIUE.
For the match, the Cougars outshot the Roos 16-7. Kyle Martin played the first half in goal for UMKC before Corby took over at the break. Both goalkeepers allowed a goal. Corby made three saves.
Kalish said the Cougars, who used just 13 players Friday, will try and get healthy before the start of the conference tournament. If they do, Kalish believes the Cougars can have success.
"We'll try and recover," he said. "If we put our best performance on the field, we can play with anyone in the conference."