Listen live online Tuesday at 6 p.m. on the Slocum Sports Network as the Marshall Redhawks host the Western Panthers in a District 19 first round boys soccer match. The winner moves to the semifinal Thursday at Coldwater against either Charlotte or Eaton Rapids, while the loser sees their season end.
Marshall enters at 18-2-1, coming off an Interstate 8 Conference Gold Cup championship win Thursday over seventh-ranked Coldwater, 2-1. It was their second 2-1 win over the Cardinals this year. Ranked #6 in last week’s Division 2 Coaches Association poll, the Redhawks are 11-0-1 in their last 12 matches. Marshall won the District 20 title last season, falling in the regional semifinal to eventual state champion Mattawan.
Western enters at 10-8-1 on the season, going 6-2-0 in their final eight matches. They ended the regular season in the Interstate 8 Conference tournament third place match, falling in penalty kicks to Hastings, 6-5. In the previous match, they gave Coldwater a fight. After getting flattened by the Cardinals in September 8-0, the Panthers battled Coldwater to a 1-0 loss.
When Marshall and Western met in September, the Redhawks won on the road 5-2. Of note, the Panthers are the only team this season to score multiple goals against Marshall. Within the district, both squads hold wins over Charlotte and Jackson Northwest. Marshall has beaten Mason, with Western losing to them. Neither have met Eaton Rapids.