UK Falls at ETSU, 3-1
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – Freshman Xahne Reid’s first career goal was not enough as the No. 23 Kentucky men’s soccer team lost 3-1 at East Tennessee State University on Wednesday.
Kentucky conceded the first two goals of the match – on 19 and 24 minutes – before Reid halved ETSU’s lead 10 minutes before halftime.
But ETSU’s Mitchell Cecatiello got onto the end of some ping pong at the top of the box and smashed his shot home to give the hosts a lead they would not relinquish a minute into the second half.
“This is the third game in a row we’re coming off the field not happy with the result,” UK head coach Johan Cedergren said. “We’re supposed to be a team that’s solid defensively. We pride ourselves in our defense. We have one of the best goalkeepers in the country, but if you give him that kind of help not even Cally (Irving) is going to keep us in the game.
“Now we just have to find a way to recover and regroup. We’re opening conference play on Saturday. In the end we’re .500 now, 2-2-1. I think what we need is a little bit of a change in mentality.”
ETSU scored the opener off a failed clearance. The ball was deflected to James Smith eight yards out, and he hit it into the right-side netting to give the hosts the lead after 19 minutes.
Five minutes later Joao Ramalho doubled the advantage, getting on the end of a long, central ball over the top and hitting into the left side of the goal low.
Reid showed astonishing acceleration to receive a short through ball from Kristoffer Tollefsen and smash his finish in. The goal was the first of the Jamaican freshman’s career, and Tollefsen’s first assist this season.
But after getting back into it late in the first half, ETSU shut the door early in the second when Cecatiello put ETSU two ahead again.
ETSU and UK are now 2-2 against one another in the past four years, with ETSU having won both of the contests in Johnson City, Tennessee.
ETSU improved to 2-2-1 this season.
Kentucky will open the Conference USA portion of the schedule at Marshall on Saturday at 11 a.m.