Eagles’ Comeback Sidelined
Wheeling Central jumped out to a first-half 2-0 lead against the home-standing Magnolia Blue Eagles, who fell 2-1, despite a dominating comeback in the second half. Central won every challenged kick and out-hustled the Eagles in the first half.
During a heated halftime, Magnolia Head Coach Matt Quinet challenged his team to step it up and play with emotion and the desire he has seen at practice. The boys responded well when play resumed and scored on a Juan Carlos Ramos direct kick from about 35 yards out to cut the lead in half.
Central responded, too but Magnolia’s sophomore keeper, Michael Jones, was up to the task and shut the door with some of his best goal-keeper work this season, pushing away anything coming his way.
Not only did Jones shutout the Maroon Knights in the second half, but his punting gave the Eagles more chances to work their magic on offense.
When what appeared to be a foul on Ramos in the box was ruled a no call, the Blue Eagle comeback faltered, despite a solid performance by many Blue Eagles, including Joey Culley. Culley started his first game of the season after sitting out most of the season with a leg injury suffered in a pre-season scrimmage. Jason Long played an inspired game at his sweeper position, while Ramos was Ramos.
There were many more Blue Eagles that stepped up, including Isaac Howell, Ethan Arman, James and Trevor Long, Chase Cain, Daniel Mateer and Andrew Stackpole. Jones finished the night with 15 saves in between the nets.
There have been other games played, but Magnolia hasn’t sent in any stats.