Savage Beast: Harding Men's Soccer blanks Upper Iowa, 3-0

From Harding University

Harding senior Jackson Savage scored on a penalty kick and assisted on another goal to lead the Bisons to a 3-0 victory over Upper Iowa in Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association play Friday at the Harding Soccer Field.

The victory evened Harding's overall record at 4-4-1 and moved the Bisons to 2-2-0 in the MIAA. Upper Iowa lost its third straight, and the Peacocks fell to 3-7-0 overall and 1-3-0 in conference.

The game-winning goal came from Harding forward Shea McGee in the 10th minute of play. Savage sent a pass up the right side that freshman Adam Borsheim cross to the left side of the 18-yard box. McGee came sliding in to score inside the far post. It was his second goal of the season and his second game-winner.

Harding sophomore Ian Park scored his team-leading third goal in the 79th minute to make it 2-0. Senior Josh Ireland crossed the ball from the right side to Park, whose shot from the top of the six-yard box hit the underside of the cross bar and over the goal line.

Upper Iowa lost its composure after Harding's second goal and received three yellow cards over the next four minutes.

Park again played a role in Harding's final goal. He was fouled in the box in the 83rd minute, and Savage calmly sent Upper Iowa goalkeeper Jordan Bell the wrong way and scored inside the right post on the penalty kick.

Savage's goal was his second of the season and the first penalty kick attempted by Harding in 2012.

Harding's defense limited Upper Iowa to only three shots on goal, and Bison freshman goalkeeper Chase Keeney made all three saves for his third shutout of the season. Keeney's best save came on a free kick from Peacock senior midfielder Marco Garcia. Garcia's 30-yard blast curled around Harding's wall, and Keeney made a diving save to his left, deflecting the ball off the post and allowing defender Rhon Royer to clear the ball out of the box.

Harding now has multiple wins in conference play for the first time since winning a school-record three Gulf South Conference games in 2008.

The Bisons will look to tie that record Sunday when they host Truman State at 3 p.m.