A Saturday afternoon high school boys soccer duel between two top-notch teams ended in a draw.
The McFarland Spartans, ranked No. 1 in the WIAA Division 3 polls, needed a later goal from Ethan Nichols to salvage a 1-1 tie against visiting Madison West, a Division 1 school that entered the game with seven wins in its last nine matches.
The game was scoreless until the 66th minute when Ousman Jallow tallied unassisted. But McFarland’s Ethan Nichols knotted the game seven minutes with the assist going to Zach Nichols.
Both goalies had a busy day with the Spartans Matt Schutt nabbing 19 saves, and the Regents Oscar Herrera stopping 15 shots.
McFarland has a record to 10-2-3 overall and 6-0 in the Rock Valley Conference. The Spartans are competing this week in the conference tournament before starting play in the postseason. McFarland – a No. 1 seed in the Division 3 tournament – will play either Adams-Friendship or Edgerton in its first game on Thursday Oct. 24.
Spartans 2, Oregon 0
After a scoreless first half, McFarland’s Brett Connor and Ethan Nichols scored second-half goals to give the Spartans a non-conference win over Oregon on Tuesday Oct. 8.
Both goals were unassisted with Connor scoring his in the 57th minute and Nichols putting the ball in the net eight minutes later.
Schutt made six saves in goal for McFarland, and Oregon’s Coltrane Lobreglio made 10 stops.
Spartans 10, Edgerton 0
Jack Bartzen scored three goals and Zach Nichols had two as the visiting Spartans walloped the Crimson Tide in an Oct. 7 Rock Valley Conference match.
McFarland found the back of the net seven times in the first half as Zach Nichols scored both of his goals in the first 16 minutes of play and Ethan Nichols added another to give the Spartans a 3-0 lead. Freshman Mason Brown added to the lead in the 19th minute, and Gray Tambling, Jack McGinn and Bartzen also scored to put McFarland in control.
Bartzen scored twice in the second half and senior Tyler LaLuzerne also contributed to the rout.
A number of Spartans were also credited with assists including Zach Nichols, Ethan Nichols, Erik Pagenkopf, Ben Hoang, Tambling and Rowan Wagner.
Schutt and Austin Miller shared goaltending duties with Schutt stopping one shot and Miller getting three saves.