By: Chris Coon
Tuesday night The No. 4 University of Akron men’s soccer team was defeated 1-0 by Michigan in the first overtime at UM Soccer Stadium.
A scramble in front of the net led to a chip shot goal by Latife Alashe in the 97th minute. The goal was Alashe’s second goal of the season and his second career game-winner.
It was a career night for Akron junior goalkeeper David Meves, who finished the game with a nine saves.
Tuesday’s match was the Zips’ (10-2-2) third regular season loss on the road in their last 31 games. The loss to Michigan also marked the Zips’ first loss to a Big Ten school since 2008, snapping a 13-game unbeaten streak (12-0-1).
Throughout the game, the Zips had a number of opportunities to score, most notably when sophomore Aodhan Quinn rang the cross bar with 96 minutes left to play. A Michigan defender was able to come off the line to clear the ball twice.
Michigan’s goalkeeper Adam Grinwis had five saves in the game, including two point-blank stops from Akron sophomore forward Darren Mattocks.
On the season, Michigan improves their record to 5-10-1 after suffering eight one-goal losses and three overtime defeats this season.
In the fourth minute of play, Akron avoided going down 1-0 when junior midfielder Chad Barson slipped on the wet grass in Zips territory, leaving Tyler Arnone of Michigan with an open path to the keeper. Meves, however, held his own, stopping the shot by Arnone at the top of the box.
Michigan lost another opportunity to score in the sixth minute of play after Mathew Rickard hit the right post. Wolverine Latif Alashe was there for the rebound in front of the goal, but his shot went wide right.
The Zips also had chances to score, first coming on a shot from freshman defender DeAndre Yedlin in the opening minutes of the match which was stopped by Michigan goalkeeper Adam Grinwis.
Junior forward Thomas Schmitt had an opportunity to score as well, pulling Grinwis off the line, but a Michigan defender was able to clear the shot.
During the 37th minute, the Wolverines looked like they were going to take an early lead when Adam Shaw fired a shot in the upper right hand corner. Meves, however, was able to go to his to make the save.
In the second half, Quinn provided a pass from a corner kick to Barson in the 48th minute near the back post. Barson’s header, however, was knocked away by Michigan midfielder Luca Schioppa near the goal line.
The Zips were turned away in the 72nd minute from a save by Grinwis after UA’s sixth corner kick. The pass by Quinn was punched out by the UM keeper, but freshman midfielder Will Trapp sent a shot from 25 yards out into the Michigan defense. Mattocks recovered the rebound and fired a shot back at the goalkeeper, but was denied.
Meves made a great stop off of Michigan’s Noble Sullivan on a one-on-one in the 89th minute.
The Zips will return to Mid-American Conference play this Friday when they travel to Buffalo to take on the Bulls. Kick-off is slated for 7:30 p.m.