CHAMPAIGN — The Urbana boys’ soccer team might not have the flashiest record, but then the Tigers haven’t backed away from scheduling tough, either.
Two of their four defeats this season were against an Edwardsville team that entered the week 9-3-2. The other setbacks were to a Morton squad that last fall was a Class 2A sectional runner-up and to a Rochester team that was a 2012 sectional semifinalist.
“We’ve had a game or two where we haven’t played real well, but we’ve also played some pretty tough competition,” Urbana coach Randy Blackman said.
“Hopefully, we’re learning from it and getting better from it.”
The dividends were evident Monday, when the Tigers visited previously unbeaten Champaign Central and came away from the Twin City showdown with a hard-earned 2-1 victory.
“It was an even match and probably could have gone either way,” Blackman said after his team improved to 7-4-1. “It was back and fourth, just well played.”
David Anderson’s second-half goal broke a 1-1 tie and Urbana held on to hand the Maroons (8-1-2) their first loss.
“We got a good look and David made a real nice shot to get it by their keeper,” Blackman said. “We’re just fortunate the ball bounced our way that time.”
Anderson also assisted on the Tigers’ first goal, by Pat McQueen in the first half. Emmanuel Komba scored in the same half for Central.
Although this was the lone match of the regular season between these Big 12 rivals, they could meet again next month in the Class 2A Centennial Regional. The bracket for the regional will be announced Oct. 4.
If the Maroons and Tigers do square off in the postseason, Blackman would consider it just one more stiff obstacle in a challenging 2013 schedule.
“They’re a good team, no question about it,” he said. “We feel fortunate to win that game.”