WHEELING, WV- The Tigers went on the road tonight to take on in-state rival, Wheeling University, home of the Cardinals. Both teams entered the match still searching for their first win of the season, and the physicality of play reflected that.
Salem’s offense, hot after a 2-3 loss to Frostburg State, struck first with a goal by Diego Losada 16:32 into the match. From there the Tigers looked to lean on their defense to hold their lead. Salem’s defense held strong as they took a 1-0 lead into the half.
While Salem had been able to hold Wheeling scoreless in the first, it wasn’t for a lack of opportunity on Wheeling’s part. The Cardinals were able to get 11 shots off in the first compared to the Tigers 5 and continued that momentum into the second half where they were able to get 9 shots off to the Tigers 5. However the Tigers goalkeeper, Samuel Reyna-Farje, was able to stop all 6 of the Cardinals shots on goal.
As the match entered its final minutes tensions rose and a breaking point was reached. The two teams went at it at the 87 minute mark and officials had to break it up. The players involved were David Teruel Nuno and Ben Lam for Salem along with Luis Bravo, Julio D’Lima, Richard Afolayanka, and Joergen Bjerkreim for Wheeling. In total there were 2 red cards and 5 yellow cards awarded to the participants with Salem receiving 1 red card and 1 yellow card while Wheeling received 1 red card and 4 yellow cards.
In the end Salem came out victorious, notching there first mark in the win column this season in enemy territory. After tonight Wheeling will continue to search for their first victory of the season.
The Tigers are back in action against West Liberty on Sunday, September 17th at 1:00 pm as they continue their road trip.