03/02/2024
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ELIZABETHTOWN – East Bladen’s Malcolm Bolden and Jacob Nixon scored goals in the final 8 minutes, but it wasn’t enough as Midway survived and posted a 3-2 Southeastern Athletic Conference boys’ soccer victory Wednesday night.

“Chase (Starkloff) served a perfect ball on a free kick from the right side that Malcolm was able to put home with 8 (minutes) to play,” said Eagle Coach Jay Raynor.  “With 5 minutes to play Jacob Nixon finished a loose ball that was in front of the goal.”

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Photos by Kenneth Armstrong

The Raiders took a 2-0 halftime lead then tacked on another goal in the 2nd half for a 3-0 lead.

“We made some adjustments at that point,” said Raynor. “Scrapped the system we work on every day. Went with 4 forwards and started to dump the ball into their defensive 1/3rd. It caused them some issues, and we were able to produce 2 goals in the last 8 minutes. Had several chances for the equalizing goal but couldn’t convert.”

Raynor continued, “We didn’t execute. The things coached in training didn’t translate to the game. We needed to pressure them and pressure the ball. We didn’t do that. We needed to attack left to right. We didn’t do that. It’s on me. I’ve got to do better and set these guys up to be successful.”

“Midway wanted it a lot more than we did,” added Raynor. “They played like they had something to play for. Hats off to them.”

The Eagles, now 2-1 in conference play and 6-3 overall, will travel to SAC-7 leader Clinton Monday for a 6 p.m. game.

 “My guys are tough kids and have fight,” concluded Raynor. “That showed in the last 10 minutes. They will rebound and be ready for Monday.”

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