Verona clinched the Big Eight Conference title with a 7-0 home win over Madison La Follette and Sun Prairie’s 2-1 win over Madison East on Monday, Oct. 7.
The Wildcats (12-1-2, 7-0 Big Eight) were coming off a 4-2 road win over Madison Memorial on Thursday, Oct. 3, at Mansfield Stadium.
Verona 7, Madison La Follette 0
The Wildcats gradually figured out the Lancers in a win at Reddan Soccer Park.
Bennett Luttinen snuck a left-footed strike inside the left post and past La Follette goalkeeper Gabe Murphy in the 22nd minute.
La Follette had an own goal at the 24-minute mark, as its defenders couldn’t clear a cross into heavy traffic by Stanley Maradiaga. Sam Lynch dove and headed in a corner kick by Sam Abreu in the 30th minute.
Max Lynch scored off a crisp pass by Diego Luna in the 34th minute, and Luna sent a right-footed blast into the back of the net 12 seconds before halftime.
Luna right-footed blast 12 seconds before halftime
“We were doing really well with our offensive attack,” Luna said, “taking each other’s spots and filling different roles. I just found the gap on the assist, and the volley happened because everybody was in the right place at the right time.”
Lynch dove and headed in another corner kick by Abreu in the 55th minute. Jorge Lagunes’ left-footed strike deflected off the right post and into the back of the net in the 58th minute to cap the scoring.
The Wildcats outshot the Lancers 22-3 (15-3 on goal), and held a 12-0 advantage in corner kicks. Verona keepers Nate Hanson (two saves) and Owen Gibson (one save) combined on the shutout.
Verona 4, Madison Memorial 2
The Wildcats jumped out to a quick lead and held off the Spartans in the second half.
Eliot Popkewitz scored in the third minute for Verona, and Jack Knight made it 2-0 in the ninth minute. Jonathan Gamez assisted both goals.
“Opening the game strong is what I really liked,” Verona coach Chris Handrick said. “Eliot’s placement on his goal to start was unmatchable.”
Sam Lynch scored in the 42nd minute on an assist from Luttinen in the 42nd minute to make it 3-1 Wildcats at halftime.
Memorial cut it to 3-2 in the 56th minute, but Luttinen scored five minutes later on an assist by Knight.
Verona outshot Memorial 15-5 (10-3 on goal). Hanson made three saves for the Wildcats.