By Thomas Becker
The UPEI Men's Soccer Panthers left it all on the field Friday night, but it wasn't enough as the Acadia Axemen came out on top 1-0.
Reigning AUS Player of the Week, Cooper Coats, entered the game in the 77th minute on a hunch by his head coach Findlay MacRae and it worked.
"He was injured in our last game and I wasn't going to play him, but he's got that something extra and he proved it," said MacRae.
In the 89th minute, Coats shot one past the outstretched arms of Panther keeper Brett Strba for the decisive goal.
"It's an exciting win," said Coats. "In a 90 minute game a goal can come at any time and it did tonight." Strba, who played a confident game in goal, kept Acadia scoreless throughout the match, buying time for his Panthers to score against one of the league's best.
In the second half, the Panthers controlled possession and pressured the Axemen defence, but couldn't score when the opportunities presented themselves.
"At halftime we challenged the boys to go after this game and I think they did that," said Panthers head coach Lewis Page.
"There are plenty of positives to build on here."
The Panthers will regroup and look for their first win of the year when they take on the UNB Varsity Reds Sept. 18 in Fredericton.