Nov. 18, 2012
Site: Milwaukee, Wis. (Valley Fields)
Score: Northwestern 1, No. 7 seed Marquette 0
Records: NU (13-5-4), Marquette (16-4-1)
Next NU Event: Sunday, Nov. 25 at No. 10 seed Louisville • Cardinal Soccer Park • Time: TBA
MILWAUKEE, Wis. -- Northwestern freshman forward Joey Calistri tallied his team-leading ninth goal of the season in the 31st minute and that was all the Wildcats needed as they upset No. 7 seed Marquette in the second round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament Sunday night at Valley Fields. With the win, Northwestern advances past the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in the team’s seven trips to the big dance and will play in the round of 16 on Sunday, Nov. 25 (time TBA) against No. 10 seed Louisville.
“I thought it was a great game," said Northwestern head coach Tim Lenahan
, who captured his 250th career victory with Sunday's win. "I thought the first half we really played well, particularly the first 15 or 20 minutes, and Joey made a big play and then we defended like absolute warriors at the end of the game. When they were lumping service after service in there, we were hanging on for dear life but our guys were just absolute warriors. Marquette is a great team, they’ve had an awesome season, their coach has just done a remarkable job in the last seven years that he’s been here. But we were able to make a play and then we were really battling at the end of the game to move onto the Sweet 16, so it’s a good day for Northwestern soccer.”
Sunday’s match was a grind as both teams combined for just 17 shots with Marquette holding the slight 9-8 advantage on chances. Each team fired off four shots in the first half but the one that counted for Northwestern came at the 30:30 mark.
The Wildcats had a favorable free kick spot, just to the left of the 18-yard box, after Marquette was whistled for a foul. Junior defender Scott Lakin’s free kick was played back to the top of the box, finding Calistri who sent home a one-touch shot into the upper right corner past a diving MU goalkeeper Charlie Lyon.
Both teams continued to battle in the second half with five shots for the Golden Eagles compared to four for the Wildcats. Marquette had its only two shots on goal in the second half and NU sophomore goalkeeper Tyler Miller saved both.
The Wildcat defense also blocked a number of Marquette looks inside the box and defended until the final seconds. Northwestern was whistled for a foul at midfield with the clock winding down, setting up a Marquette free kick but the Golden Eagles were unable to get any looks at the net as the Wildcats hung on for the 1-0 victory.
Sunday’s match was the first time Marquette had been shut out in 2012 as the Golden Eagles entered the match averaging 2.10 goals per game.
The Wildcats on the other hand posted their 10th shutout of the season. Miller has been in net for all 10 shutouts, which is a new career high after shutting out nine opponents in 2011. Miller now has 19 career shutouts, 10 off the NU record of 29 set by Misha Rosenthal from 2005-09.
The Wildcats are now 9-6-1 all-time in the NCAA Tournament with all of those matches coming under Lenahan. The last time Northwestern advanced past the second round was in 2009, when NU seniors Jarrett Baughman, Nick Gendron, Chris Ritter, Kyle Schickel, Tommy Tombridge and Michael Walbridge were freshmen.
“For these seniors, this is book ends," Lenahan said. "They made it to the Sweet 16 as freshmen, we didn’t make it in 2010 and then they went one-and-done last year, so with the ups and downs of the season, this team is really coming together. Again, it’s just great for our program. For the seniors, you always want to leave a mark when you leave and hopefully we’re not done yet."
Northwestern now turns its attention to No. 10 seed Louisville, who defeated Winthrop, 5-0, at home Sunday evening. NU's match at Cardinal Park will be a homecoming for three Wildcats as Layth Masri and Kyle Schickel are from Louisville while Lepe Seetane went to high school in the area. Kickoff time is still TBD.
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