Mattawan soccer defeated Hackett Catholic 4-3 on a wet and soggy Monday evening in Kalamazoo. After a dominant start to the match, the Wildcats had to fend off a comeback bid from a scrappy Irish group.
In the ninth minute, Mattawan went ahead on a Josh Filiputti goal, assisted by James Sobol. Five minutes later, the Wildcats earned a penalty kick and Connor Burkett drained it for a 2-0 lead. Burkett scored again to open the 36th minute, putting Mattawan up 3-0.
Despite getting unofficially outshot 13-2 in the first half, Hackett found some life as Stephen Hough struck through traffic in the 38th minute. The Wildcats went back ahead by three in the 45th minute thanks to Sobol.
After struggling with possession in the first half, the Irish were able to keep things fairly even for the second half. Hackett would get a penalty kick of their own in the 53rd minute, which Hough buried to put the tally at 4-2. Retaliation after a foul to open the 64th minute led to a red card against Mattawan, forcing the Wildcats to play down a man for the remainder of the match.
Soon after, Daniel Amat scored off an assist by Carson Coffman, putting the Irish back within one with 14:36 left. However, the Wildcats were able to hang on and keep their young unbeaten season intact. Mattawan goalkeeper Carson Foor unofficially made five saves with Hackett’s Breyton Franklin getting eight stops.
HCP falls to 2-2 overall and has another strong non-league test ahead Wednesday as they host Wolverine Conference power Otsego. Mattawan moves to 6-0 and starts SMAC play at home against defending league champ Portage Central Wednesday.