Saturday afternoon Tennessee Wesleyan College hosted Montreat College in a game that was going to be another hard fought AAC contest. Montreat were ranked #44 in the country after a string of good results. TWC were coming off the back of their 2-2 draw with Bryan College earlier in the week.
TWC started the game sluggishly and struggled to control the pace and flow of the game, but after about 15 minutes TWC began to gain a foothold in the game through the good play of TWC's central midfield partnership of captain Luke Winter and Ryan Smith. It was through this partnership that the TWC first goal came about, Winter gathered the ball on around the halfway line, slid it through to Smith who controlled the ball and from twenty five yards out hit a rocket of a shot into the top corner of the Montreat goal. It was no more than TWC deserved because after the shaky start they dominated the play. For the rest of the half TWC peppered the Montreat goal, but could not find the back of the net again before the half. At halftime the score was TWC 1 Montreat 0.
After the break TWC played well and saw plenty of the ball. A number of chances were created mostly through the middle of the field. The best chance came when a TWC corner was swung in and Josh Simnett was hauled down by one on the Montreat defenders, the referee had no hesitation but to award a penalty to TWC. The penalty was taken by TWC's captain Luke Winter who opted for power and uncharacteristically hammered the ball over the bar. This missed penalty seemed to deflate TWC and Montreat came back into the game. In the 63rd minute Montreat equalized after a poorly taken free kick was deflected into the path of Cody DeBelle who had the easy task of heading the ball into the TWC net.
At this point it would have been easy for TWC to fold, but instead they rolled their sleeves up and got on with it. TWC again pulled ahead, a corner was taken from the right by Luke Winter, Pedro Alba who was standing next to the goalkeeper drifted onto the edge of the six yard box to win the header that was deflected past the keeper. 2-1 to TWC. TWC put the game to bed on the 82nd minute when TWC's freshman left back Trent Huff won the ball, dribbled forward with it and found John Carrier who passed the ball past the onrushing Montreat keeper. The final score was 3-1 to TWC and it was definitely deserved.
This puts TWC 1-0-1 in the conference. Their next game is away to NCAA III Maryville College on Tuesday night.