Men's Soccer Plays To 1-1 Tie Against Kentucky

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. - The Michigan State men's soccer team kept its unbeaten season alive, playing to a 1-1 tie against Kentucky at the Michigan Invitational Sunday afternoon. The Spartans are now 5-0-1 on the season, while Kentucky moves to 1-3-2.

Both of the contest's goals came in the first half, as Kentucky's Barry Rice scored on a header at the 18:03 mark to give the Wildcats an early 1-0 lead. MSU would answer at the 38:25 mark when junior defender Josh Rogers fired a penalty kick past UK goalkeeper Dan Williams.

Kentucky's tally came off a corner kick by Jirijoonas Kanth, who sent a cross to Rice, who buried a header into the center of the net. Michigan State drew a penalty kick opportunity when Louis Stephens III penetrated the Wildcat defense and was fouled in the box while attempting a shot. Rogers then sent the ensuing penalty kick into the back of the net to tie the match, 1-1.

"I thought we played well," head coach Joe Baum said. "We played with a lot of energy. We ran into two very good goalies this weekend, and we couldn't really solve this one too well. We had a lot of great chances, but their goalie was probably the player of the game."

The match, Michigan State's third consecutive double overtime affair, was MSU's most physical affair so far this season as both teams combined for five yellow cards. Kentucky had four cautions and 25 fouls while MSU was issued one yellow card and committed 13 fouls.

"Kentucky is a strong and aggressive team," Baum said. "There were a couple of times when we got close to scoring and they would just foul us."

MSU outshot Kentucky by a 15-8 margin as five different Spartans contributed two shots apiece. Michigan State also owned 5-4 edges in shots on goal and corner kicks. Senior goalkeeper Chris Austin made three saves in 110 minutes in goal, lowering his goals against average to 0.46. Williams had four saves in goal for the Wildcats.

The Spartans return to action on Sunday, Sept. 23 when they host Penn State in their Big Ten opener. The match is set for a 1 p.m. kickoff at Old College Field.

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