Sept. 25, 2009
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MILWAUKEE - The Marquette men's soccer team had enough endurance to outlast Cincinnati, 1-0, Friday night at Valley Fields for its first BIG EAST win of the season. With both teams scoreless through regulation time, sophomore midfielder Calum Mallace found the back of the net on a direct kick with 109:55 on the clock, sealing the victory in double overtime.
"Unbelievable. Wow. A typical BIG EAST match that was finished off with an unbelievable goal," said head coach Louis Bennett. "I couldn't have asked for anything more than that; to score and not give Cincinnati a chance to get back at us."
A Cincinnati foul placed the ball 22 yards out towards the center of the field for the Golden Eagles. Mallace and junior Anthony Colaizzi both stood over the ball, and on the whistle Colaizzi ran over the ball before Mallace struck the ball into the left side of the net for the golden goal.
With the win, the Golden Eagles improve to 2-4-1 overall, and 1-1-1 in the BIG EAST.
"I'm really glad we managed to swing it our way, and credit to the lads," said Bennett. "We played quite a few guys and everyone stayed on task. I was hugely proud of the diligence and of the work ethic today."
Cincinnati (5-3-0, 1-2-0 BIG EAST), which entered the game as the top scoring team in the BIG EAST with 16 goals in seven games, was held to just two shots on goal. Both squads had chances in regulation to take the lead, but neither took advantage of the slippery conditions in a game played in heavy rain.
In the 39th minute, just three minutes after replacing Adam Lysak, senior Nick Kay tallied a shot on goal from the left side, as his attack from eight yards out forced Cincinnati goalkeeper Matt Williams to make a diving save. In the previous two meetings, Kay has netted three goals against the Bearcats.
MU goalkeeper Matt Pyzdrowski made a key stop in the 44th minute of the match, when UC juniors Tristan Watson and Nick Weightman started a give-and-go, with Watson being stopped at the top of the box by Pyzdrowski, who held the Bearcats to no shots on goal in the first half.
After halftime, both teams came out aggressive as Marquette had the first quality opportunity of the half to tally a goal. In the 51st minute, senior defender Tim Jallow crossed the ball from the right corner to Michael Greene, who just missed the goal wide on a header.
The match quickly turned physical as both teams vied for the conference victory. Marquette's Matt Stummer (69:20) and Michael Alfano (73:59), and Cincinnati's Luke Henke (84:21) all received cautions.
A Mallace corner kick in the 85th minute almost put Marquette ahead, forcing UC's Williams to dive in traffic and punch the ball out. Another scoring opportunity for the Golden Eagles was denied when Lysak carried the ball up the right side and towards the goal, but MU was whistled for a foul.
After a scoreless 90 minutes of play, the Golden Eagles entered their third consecutive overtime game in a row, after tying 5/9 USF and falling at DePaul in the last week. The extra time was the first of the season for Cincinnati, which left Milwaukee with their second BIG EAST loss.
Overtime was evenly played, as both teams played cautiously with the wet conditions but still played the ball in their attacking areas. UC outshot the Golden Eagles, 4-2, in the final 20 minutes. In the 97th minute, Bearcats defender Kit North served a dangerous cross into the area, which Pyzdrowski deflected. A quick counterattack gave the ball to sophomore Chris Madsen up the middle, who couldn't get a shot off.
With the clock ticking down in the first overtime, Mallace served a cross from the left side and found Madsen in the box, who got a head on the serve in the far side of the box, but headed it just wide of the right post.
The first and only Bearcats opportunity of the second overtime came at the 106:25 mark when redshirt freshman midfielder Darren Weber passed the ball to junior midfielder Mark Konitsch on the right side, forcing Pyzdrowski to make his second, and final, save of the game.
Mallace's goal at the 109:55 mark was his third career mark, and second of the season. Both of his goals this season have been on set pieces, as he buried a direct kick from 35 yards out against Milwaukee in the Milwaukee Cup. His three goals have all been game-winners for the Golden Eagles.
Cincinnati outshot Marquette, 14-11, but MU was able to garner more shots on frame, tallying eight on goal versus the Bearcats' two. Williams recorded seven saves for UC, all in regulation. Five MU players were on the field the entire game, with Mallace and Scott Miller joining the backline of Pyzdrowski, Alfano and Stummer.
"We can't get too far ahead of ourselves, and we can't get too carried away," said Bennett. "I said at the beginning of the season that this team can win and this team was going to win. I think we do a lot of good things day in and day out -- on the field and off the field."
The Golden Eagles return to action at Valley Fields on Sunday afternoon against the Louisville Cardinals, ranked seventh in the nation by Soccer America. The match is the last opportunity to receive $1 off admission by donating a new or gently used children's book at the gate to benefit the Next Door Foundation's "Books for Kids" program.