Polk County Middle defender Jasper Nespeca prepares to take the ball away from an Apple Valley attacker during Monday's match

Polk Middle pulls away in second half to upend Apple Valley

Second halves have been the best time all season for Polk County Middle’s boys soccer squad.

Monday proved no different.

The Wolverines snapped a 1-1 halftime tie with two quick goals after the break, then kept Apple Valley at bay to hand the Knights a 3-1 loss in Blue Ridge Conference soccer action at Utz Field.

Polk Middle improved to 5-3 with the win and should be tied for second place in the BRC East Division race with the loser of Monday’s Flat Rock-Hendersonville match. Apple Valley dropped to 3-3.

Cooper Meyer and Blake Anderson each scored in the first five minutes of the second half to lift Polk Middle to a lead it wouldn’t lose. Meyer hit a long drive that found the upper half of the goal while Anderson connected a long free kick that also cleared Apple Valley’s goalkeeper.

“It seems like it has been a theme for us to come out and do a better job in the second half than we did in the first half,” said Polk Middle head coach Lennox Charles. “Sometimes it’s just reminding them of the things we want to do and the things they need to be aware of.

“This is a big win for us. Everybody has issues (with schedule changes and quarantines), so we’re just taking it as we go. This keeps us in that tournament spot.”

The Knights struck first, but the Wolverines responded just before intermission as Meyer scored. That sent the teams into the half tied.

“It felt like we were having the better of the first half, but we just weren’t creating chances,” Charles said. “Once Cooper got that first one, it felt like that helped us start putting some balls on goal and to see what happens.”

The Wolverines’ next two matches will likely decide their conference fate as Polk travels Wednesday to Hendersonville Middle and then returns home next Monday to host Flat Rock.