DYERSVILLE — Jeremy McMurrin was anxious to see the response of his team.
A 6-0 start to the season quickly gave way to a back-to-back losses, the second of which a Monday three-score shutout at the hands of Wamac Conference foe Marion, which is ranked fifth in Class 2A.
“It’s a great performance from us all the way around,” McMurrin said after the Class 1A fifth-ranked Spartans held off No. 2 Dyersville Beckman, 1-0, in a Wamac game Friday at Beckman High School. “To come back from the way we played against Marion, we were disappointed in ourselves. We kind of had a little gut check over the last couple of days. The boys responded well.”
Solon (7-2, 1-1 Wamac) returned plenty from the squad that reached the 1A state tournament last season. Senior midfielder Isaac Vang was a 2017 1A honorable mention all-state selection, while junior Luke Yetley led the team with 15 goals.
The Spartans' best all-around player might be defender Nick Radcliffe, whose free kick from 75 feet away found the head of junior Luke McInnis in the 25th minute.
“Nick Radcliffe played a really good ball,” said McInnis, who scored his fifth goal of the season on the play. “It dropped right on my head and I was just able to tap it right in the corner.”
McInnis is not the only Solon player who is thriving in an expanded role this season. Junior Jorel Justus scored a whopping 15 goals in the first five games of the season.
Dyersville Beckman (1-2, 1-2) applied plenty of offensive pressure in the second half, but Radcliffe and senior goalkeeper Eric Weetman turned the Blazers away each time.
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Weetman — also an honorable mention all-state honoree last season — posted his fifth shutout of the season.
“Yesterday, our coach told us to trust each other,” Weetman said. “Just have faith that they will knock that ball down. They’ll do everything they can to jump in front of shots. That’s what we did.”
Solon visits West Delaware on Monday, while Beckman hosts its first unranked opponent of the season Tuesday against Anamosa.
Class 1A No. 5 Solon 1, No. 2 Dyersville Beckman 0
Goal — Luke McInnis 1 (5). Assist — Nick Radcliffe 1 (1).
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