Columbus Catholic comes back to tie McDonell/Regis in Mid-State Soccer Conference showdown
Dons maintain one-point lead in conference standings
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — Charles Payant netted a goal with just more than seven minutes remaining to salvage a 2-2 draw for the Columbus Catholic soccer team against Chippewa Falls McDonell/Eau Claire Regis in a critical Mid-State Soccer Conference game Monday at Griese Park.
With the tie, the Dons (6-0-2, 3-0-2 MSSC) maintain their one-point lead over McDonell/Regis (6-3-1, 3-0-1 MSSC) in the conference standings. The two teams will meet again at Casper Park in Eau Claire on Oct. 8.
“That was a very hard-fought game,” Columbus Catholic coach Jeff Edwards said. “Both sides played very well. We figured this game was going to be for the conference, so I’m glad we could get the tie at the end and stay in the conference hunt.”
Nick Malovhr scored on a header off a crossing pass from Noah Hansen in the 30th minute to give the Dons a 1-0 lead, which they held through halftime.
Mike Hoffman used some nifty dribbling to beat two Columbus defenders and rip a shot to the upper right corner of the net past Dons’ goalkeeper Bailey Keffer to tie the game 19:10 into the second half.
Four minutes later Adam Erickson beat the Dons’ defense again to give McDonell/Regis a 2-1 lead.
Staring at its first defeat the season, Columbus was able to mount a comeback.
Payant wiggled past a number of McDonell/Regis defenders and pounded a shot past goalkeeper Scotty Wild to tie the game 2-2 with 7:04 remaining.
Keffer made a leaping save with 3:25 to go to thrwart off McDonell/Regis’ last solid scoring try, and the Dons could not get one in after a couple of chances in the final minute as the game ended in a tie. Keffer finished with 14 saves.
“We got the lead early, and we kind of got a little complacent,” Edwards said. “In the second half we came out a little flat, and they got the quick goal from (Hoffman). He’s a really good player, and he made a great play, especially with his left foot. The second goal was a little more disappointing in that we gave him a little too much space, but we recovered, and we got Charles’ awesome shot to tie it up for us.”
Columbus Catholic has a week off before traveling to Plainfield to take on Tri-County in a conference game Sept. 21.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Columbus Catholic 2, McDonell/Regis 2
McDonell/Regis 0 2 – 2
Columbus Catholic 1 1 – 2
First half: 1. CC, Nick Malovrh (Noah Hansen), 29:09.
Second half: 2. MR, Mike Hoffman, 64:10; 3. MR, Adam Erickson (Zach Yengo), 68:11; 4. CC, Charles Payant, 82:56.
Records: McDonell/Regis 6-3-1, 3-0-1 Mid-State Soccer Conference; Columbus Catholic 6-0-2, 3-0-2 Mid-State Soccer Conference.