No. 5/3 Marquette Draws With No. 8/7 Notre Dame, 1-1
Oct. 27, 2012
MILWAUKEE - No. 5/3 Marquette wrapped up its regular season with a 1-1 draw versus No. 8/7 Notre Dame following two overtime periods at Valley Fields on Saturday night.
MU finishes the regular season at 14-2-1 overall and tied for third place with the Irish (13-3-1) in the BIG EAST Blue Division standings each with 15 points in league play and a 5-2-1 record in conference matches.
Marquette is the Blue Division's No. 4 seed in the upcoming BIG EAST Men's Soccer Championship and will host Cincinnati (6-8-4), the No. 5 seed in the Red Division, in a first-round match-up at Valley Fields scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 31. Kickoff is slated for 7:05 p.m. Central time.
Notre Dame will be the No. 3 seed in the Blue Division due to a head-to-head tiebreaker with Marquette; The Irish, who receive a first-round bye into the quarterfinals, defeated MU 3-1 at Notre Dame earlier this week. A win would have given the Golden Eagles a share of their second BIG EAST division championship and the top seed.
"We had discipline," said head coach Louis Bennett. "We changed the tactics and squeezed the field. We played with impetus to win the game. When you look at a 14-2-1 record, I don't think this has been a failure or underachieved."
Redshirt freshman Axel Sjoberg scored his sixth goal of the season to give the Golden Eagles an early 1-0 advantage in the 29th minute of Saturday's heated divisional match. The central defender was sitting at the left corner of the six-yard box when senior Andy Huftalin's strike on the opposite side deflected off Notre Dame goalkeeper Will Walsh. Sjoberg collected the rebound and quickly unleashed a shot into the top shelf for the opening goal of the match.
MU, which had several more chances to extend the lead, ultimately surrendered the equalizer in the 88th minute. Notre Dame's Ryan Finley settled a loose ball at the top of the 18-yard box, side-stepped a Golden Eagles' defender and ripped a shot left of a diving Charlie Lyon in goal and into the back of the net to level the game at 1-1 at the 87:07 mark.
"We had several opportunities in the two ten minutes [of extra time] off of corners," said Bennett. "I thought we would be able to put it away."
Notre Dame finished with 19 shots overall, one more than the home side. MU had a 9-7 advantage in shots on goal. Walsh tallied a total of eight saves for the Irish while Lyon finished with five stops. Notre Dame's first shot on goal didn't come until the 72nd minute. It was the first draw on the ledger for both teams, whil MU finishes its regular season unbeaten on its home pitch in 2012.
The winner of Wednesday's first-round BIG EAST tournament match in Milwaukee will travel to Louisville for a quarterfinal game against the Cardinals, the top seed in the Red Division, on Saturday, Nov. 2.
Marquette Starters:Lyon (GK), Dillon, Sjoberg, Ciesiulka, Robb, Selvaggi, E. Pothast, Jansson, Hermsen, J. Pothast, Islami (Subs: Huftalin, Lysak)