Verona remained undefeated with a 3-2 home win over Big Eight Conference contender Middleton on Tuesday, Sept. 24, at Reddan Soccer Park.
The game was postponed Sept. 12 with the game tied 1-1 in the 28th minute due to inclement weather.
The Wildcats (8-0-2, 4-0 Big Eight), ranked No. 2 in Division 1 in the latest coaches poll, went on the road and routed Kettle Moraine 6-0 on Saturday, Sept. 21. Verona beat Madison West 4-1 on Thursday, Sept. 19, at Reddan.
Verona 3, Middleton 2
Gannon Simonett scored in the 86th minute to lift the Wildcats past the Cardinals.
Verona’s Eliot Popkewitz scored in the fifth minute before the postponement. Sam Abreu put the Wildcats ahead 2-1 with a goal in the 39th minute.
Popkewitz and Bennett Luttinen each had an assist. Nate Hanson and Owen Gibson combined for three saves.
Verona 6, Kettle Moraine 0
Popkewitz scored two goals off assists from Luttinen in the Wildcats’ nonconference road win over the Lasers.
Popkewitz has benefitted from moving up into the midfield this season, the same spot he played as a sophomore.
“It’s a little different formation, but I still have the same principles,” he said. “We needed someone to step into that spot, and I was happy to fill in and help the team.”
Kettle Moraine hurt itself scoring a goal for the Wildcats in the 16th minute. Popkewitz scored in the 40th minute to put the Wildcats up 2-0 at halftime.
Verona scored three goals in six minutes to distance itself.
Jonathan Gamez scored in the 54th minute off an assist by Abreu, Popkewitz scored in the 57th minute, and Gamez scored in the 60th minute off a pass from Popkewitz.
Jack Heilman added an insurance goal in the 78th minute, assisted by Max Lynch.
The Wildcats outshot the Lasers 14-2. Kettle Moraine did not record a shot on goal.
Verona 4, Madison West 1
A quick start and resilient effort in the second half gave the Wildcats a Big Eight home win over the Regents.
Gamez scored in the eighth minute, assisted by Luttinen.
“We came out knowing West wasn’t as mentally prepared as us,” Luttinen said. “We know that if we play our game, we can outplay almost any team. It’s just a matter of finding the other team’s weaknesses.”
Luttinen tucked a right-footed shot into the lower left corner of the goal in the 16th minute, assisted by Popkewitz.
Tonio Ermakoff converted a penalty kick in the 44th minute to cut the Regents’ deficit to 2-1 at halftime.
Simonett headed in a corner kick by Gamez in the 60th minute. Gamez added an insurance goal in the 83rd minute.
“We moved the ball really well, especially in the back end,” Verona coach Chris Handrick said. “We’ve figured out some tactical things, and now we’re seeing that paired with their talent.”
Verona outshot West 14-5. Owen Gibson stopped three shots for the Wildcats.