Xavier Tops Missouri State In Close 1-0 Affair
Sept. 22, 2012
CINCINNATI - The No. 23/16 ranked Xavier men's soccer team survived a tough test from Missouri State on Saturday and walked away with a 1-0 victory and first home shutout of the season.
Junior Matt Walker was the difference in the win for the Musketeers who improve to 6-0-2 and tie the program record for longest unbeaten streak. The Bears (4-2-3) were handed their second loss in as many matches.
Both teams played a scoreless match for 80 minutes, before Walker put Xavier on the board with the decisive goal.
Walker's goal was unassisted, as he dribbled from to top of the box to his right, and curled in a shot off his right foot across the box and into the side netting. It was his third goal of the season and first since he scored twice at IUPUI on Sept. 5.
Xavier was held in check for a majority of the game, registering eight total shots. Aside from Walker's goal, the Musketeers had just two other shots on goal, both coming from the Musketeers' leading scorer Luke Spencer.
Missouri State totaled 12 shots, with eight coming on goal. In addition to outshooting the Musketeers, the Bears also had more corner kicks, outnumbering Xavier 6-1.
Five of the Bears' corner kicks came in a two-minute span in the second half, using the wind to their advantage to pepper the Musketeers' goal with shots. Xavier's back line was able to turn away all of the Bears' shots and earn its second consecutive shutout.
Missouri State's best scoring chance came in the second half, as the Bears' Jack Roberts used the outside of his foot to curl a shot towards the lower left corner of the goal. However, senior goalkeeper Justin Marshall read the shot perfectly and dove to push the ball wide of the goal.
With his second shutout in as many games, Marshall was able to notch his 17th shutout, extending his record. Marshall had to work hard, as he made eight saves, four in each half.
Xavier looks to remain unbeaten as it continuing a five-game homestand against Thomas More on Sept. 27. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET from the Xavier University Soccer Complex.