Harding Soccer stuns Lynn 1-0 in season opener

From Harding University

Harding sophomore Ryan Wilhelm scored in the 38th minute to give the Bisons a 1-0 victory over Lynn University on Thursday in both teams' season opener at the Harding Soccer Field.

It was Harding's first victory in seven games against Lynn, who had outscored the Bisons 32-6 in the previous meetings.

In Jeremy Bishop's debut as Harding's head coach, junior midfielder Jackson Savage recovered a loose ball around midfield, spun and found Wilhelm making a run down the right side. With a defender on his back, Wilhelm toe poked the ball past Lynn goalkeeper Matt DiCerbo.

Harding's lead could have been even greater, but DiCerbo made two outstanding saves on shots by Bison freshman Ian Park early in the first half.

Lynn outshot Harding 12-9 overall but had only two shots on goal, both saved by Bison senior Zach Auala, who made his first career start.

The victory came before a crowd of 475, the third-largest crowd in the 12-year history of the program. It was Harding's first victory at home since a 2-1 victory over Delta State in October of 2009, a run of 10 home games.

Harding is back in action Saturday in Searcy against Northeastern State. The game begins at 1 p.m. and will be streamed live on HardingSports.com.