~ For OnFocus ~
Soccer teams in the Great Northern Conference can be physical affairs, with the games going down to the wire. In the second round of the conference slate the games amp up even more. Medford was out of the running for the conference title but seeding and pride gave them all the motivation they needed to bring resilient play to Edgewood Field. Mosinee countered with Conference title hopes and a 4-game winning streak.
Mosinee’s dynamic duo or Toren and Cole Holtz bring a savvy midfield presence. They keep the ball just out of reach of the opposition, and when a weakness appears they are quick to exploit it. That was the case this evening, with all of Mosinee’s goals coming on set plays with Toren or Cole delivering. The first goal came off a corner kick from Cole. Cole drilled a ball to a waiting Toren. The defense stuttered just a moment on the play and cleared the ball into their net for an own goal at 4”. Mosinee took grip of the game with possession, but the one goal was all they could muster for most of the half. Play was physical, with several players knocked to the ground and slow to get up.
Medford got very few chances, but Josh Ivey and Cole Kowalski continued to keep the backdoor closed on defense. There was one strong chance for the Raiders, but Mosinee keeper Keaton Wieloch shut the attack down. Finally, with 5 minutes remaining, Mosinee won a direct kick. After an initial stop Garret Donohue got the ball to Toren Holtz who headed in the ball, making it 2-0 Mosinee at the half.
In the second half Mosinee’s strong midfield play led to a foul and direct kick just outside the Medford box. Toren Holtz took the kick and surprised everyone, including the Medford keeper with a bullet that skipped across the ground and into the goal. The game was firmly in Mosinee’s hands when Mosinee was hit with a red card with around 30 minutes left in the match. Mosinee was forced to play with 10 men from that point forward. Medford’s spirits rose and they renewed their attack. At 51” Medford got their first goal and the game was on. Pressure was ramping up and Mosinee was limited in its counters due to playing with one forward while missing their player. Medford had been limited in opportunities to that point and suddenly was in control. With the game in doubt, the Mosinee defense stood strong, and the goal remained shut to Medford. After multiple chances resulted in no goal, the clock moved into Mosinee’s favor. Slowing the game down, Mosinee was able to wind the clock down, and complete the game. Mosinee won, 3-1.
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