The Eagles kicked off their second match of a weekend double header when they took on conference opponent Barclay College. The Bears of Barclay were coming off of a 6-2 loss at home the previous evening while Emmaus was looking to bounce back from their 4-0 loss to Manhattan Christian College. Both teams entered the game looking for their first win of the season.
The weather throughout the match was hot and excessively windy. Emmaus won the toss and elected to go with the wind in the first half. They did not take long to get on the board when, after patient build-up, senior Carson McBain (#11) found the feet of fellow midfielder Reilly Steel (#10), who bent his shot from the top of the 18 around the Bears keeper, Dalton Racster-Hall (#1). Minutes later the Eagles added to their lead when McBain found space in the middle, dribbled forward, and fired a shot into the upper 90 from 22 yards out. The Eagles third goal came when freshman Gabriel Aguilar (#22) sent in a corner kick that senior defender Jake Taylor (#12) headed home for his first goal of the season. With 20 minutes still to go in the half, McBain stepped up and scored his second goal on a quick restart from 40 yards out. McBain noticed that the keeper was out and chipped him perfectly before either team had time to get set. With the Eagle reserves now entering the game and playing with fresh energy, it was McBain who again found the back of the net when he sent in a free kick from range that caught the wind and found the side of the net. Carson's hat trick by halftime left the game in little doubt as the Eagles entered the half with a five goal cushion.
The second half proved more challenging for the Eagles as the wind continued to pick up. Focusing on patient buildup and wide play, the Eagles tended to control possession. However, it was the Barclay keeper, Dalton Racster-Hall (#1) who earned his own moment of glory when a punt from his own box caught the wind and bounced twice, the second time over the head of Eagle keeper Elisha Lewis (#2), who was filling in for an injured Jacob Bauder (#1).
As if woken by the goal, the Eagles produced one of their own. After pressing the Bears back line, a failed clearance came to freshman Stephen Sam (#15) who touched the ball out of the air, then fired home a half volley to bring the lead back to five goals.
Just minutes later Reilly Steel (#10) found space and played a perfect through ball to McBain, who slotted home his 4th goal of the match. The final score of 7-1 secured the Eagles first win of the season, and improved their conference record to 1-1.
"I was proud of the way the guys played together today, and it was fun to see different players contribute to the overall effort. Hats off to Barclay, who never quit playing hard. I trust that they will only get better as the season progresses. For our part, we have a lot to improve on, but it was nice to finally finish a game on top." (Coach Brown)
The Eagles will be back in action on Friday and Saturday (9/27-28) as they host visiting conference opponents Ozark Christian College (Joplin, MO) and Calvary University (Belton, MO). Those matches, which will be crucial for determining conference standings, will be played on parents weekend, with an All-Alumni match scheduled for later Saturday afternoon.