Oct. 24, 2012
Site: Evanston, Ill. (Lakeside Field)
Score: Northern Illinois – 1, Northwestern (RV) – 0 (OT)
Records: NU (10-4-2, 3-1-0 B1G), Northern Illinois (4-8-3, 2-1-1 MAC)
Next NU Event: Sunday, Oct. 28 – at Wisconsin – Noon CT – Madison, Wis. – Big Ten Network (LIVE)
EVANSTON, Ill. – After controlling the tempo for most of its scoreless contest against Northern Illinois Wednesday night at Lakeside Field, Northwestern was stunned by a goal from the visitors just 45 seconds into the first overtime period. On a dead sprint and fighting off Northwestern defenders, Charlie Oliver ripped a dipping shot that caught Tyler Miller off his line to edge the Wildcats 1-0.
Early in the match, NIU prevented the Wildcats from connecting on consecutive passes moving forward into the wind. NU’s first shot came 20 minutes in, when Joey Calistri
was taken down just outside the top of the 18-yard box. Grant Wilson
curled the ensuing free kick over the crossbar, but this served as a catalyst for the Northwestern’s offense the rest of the half.
Cole Missimo made an impact off the bench after entering the game in the 17th minute, beating his defender on the wing and sending in a dangerous cross that was ultimately cleared. Calistri was the main threat from then on in the half, just missing on two chances. First, Missimo cut through the NIU defense on a run, before pushing it wide to Nick Gendron. The senior’s cross found Calistri on the edge of the 6-yard box, but his header went just wide of the far post. Just a few minutes later, Scott Lakin sent a low driving cross in from the left wing, and Calistri slid in to get a touch on it, but NIU keeper Jordan Godsey got his hands on it and controlled the rebound.
NU posted five shots in the first half while NIU notched four. The Northwestern backline kept the visitors from creating a serious threat, as goalkeeper Tyler Miller wasn’t tested.
The second half saw more Wildcat chances. Another great run from Missimo allowed him to fire a lefty cross on the ground to Calistri posted up at the 6-yard box, who turned and fired a left-footer, requiring a diving save from Godsey. Calistri then gathered a clearance off an NIU corner, beat one defender and cut through the entire NIU back line before firing a curling shot just wide.
As the clock wound under down under 10 seconds, the ball bounced to Gendron at the corner of the 18-yard box. Striking it on the half-volley, Gendron’s shot ripped the outside of the side netting as the clock struck zero.
Just 45 seconds into overtime, NIU’s Oliver provided the golden goal needed. Running down the right side along Wildcat defenders, Oliver caught Miller off his line, and his shot dipped into the far left corner of the net.
It was a fairly even match statistically as both teams finished with 11 shots and four corner kicks. Godsey saved all three Northwestern shots on goal while the Huskies’ lone shot on goal in the match was Oliver's OT strike.
Northwestern will hit the road and return to Big Ten action Sunday when it plays Wisconsin in Madison. Kickoff is set for noon CT and fans can watch the match live on the Big Ten Network.
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