A back and forth affair against Mississippi Brilla FC, who won 3-2 on Thursday at Collinsville, was decided by a trio of local lads with a 1-0 win. Faik Hajderovic (Mehlville/Evansville/SLU) scored from the edge of the six yard box, pouncing on the rebound after Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal hammered a shot from the left side of the box the keeper could only knock down.
The play started as Aedan Stanley, playing at left back, picked up a loose ball just inside the offensive end for STLFC. His penetrating run initially found him looking for an outlet but he quickly picked out his club teammate Wan Kamal with a simple flick that sent him into the left side of the box. Kuzain’s (as he’s called by his teammates) blistering left-footed shot set up the 76th minute goal.
Interestingly, the two Academy players had played less than 30 minutes apiece in the previous six matches. The team now has their first win via the pair, although they sit in last place in the Mid-South Division of the Southern Conference (a legacy of their ‘official’ home in Springfield, MO) with a 1-5-1 record. Mississippi Brilla FC, who they split their two game home stand, are mid-table.
It didn’t come easy but the team deserved the win. Both squads had goals called back due to offsides but it was STLFC that had more opportunities in the box. Finally, goalkeeper Kyle Del Santo (SIUE) had to make an unbelievable diving save in the 86th to ensure the win. After a corner kick that was cleared, it fell to a MS Brilla player who’s shot seemed destined for the upper right corner. Del Santo, who first made a name for himself during the SIUE Cougars run to the second round of the NCAA tournament two years ago in his freshman year, showed again what he is capable of.
Here are an initial 30+ pics, I have another 100+ to edit that will have to wait until I finish last weekends State Cup photos in the next day or two. Enjoy (and purchase one or two, help me keep doing this!)