Louisville defeated Northwestern in the Sweet Sixteen, 2-1 thriller last night in Card Park. The Cards advance to the Elite Eight and will go to College Park to take on Maryland on Saturday, December 1st.
Neither team wasted any time getting on the scoreboard in the match. Louisville freshman, Marlon Hairston, collected a rebound and fired a shot in the back of the net in only the second minute of the game. Less than two minutes later, Northwestern’s Chris Ritter found Jarrett Baughman inside the 18 and netted his first goal of the season.
Both teams traded possessions and scoring opportunities but neither team was able to convert, ending the half in a 1-1 tie. Neither team had the shot advantage in the half, both having 4. Louisville’s keeper, Mike Mauro, finished the half with two save while Northwestern’s, Tyler Miller, finished with only one.
Louisville came out of the locker room looking to set the tone of the game, controlling possession and testing Miller as much as possible. In the 55th minute, Paolo DelPiccolo, sent a corner kick across the box to a jumping Daniel Keller. His header was collected by Northwestern’s goalie.
Less than 10 minutes later, UCLA transfer, Zach Foxhoven, was inside the penalty box and sent a shot towards goal but fell just outside the goal and hit the side netting. Louisville continued to keep possession of the game and stung together a series of passes before finding Dylan Mares in the box. Mares had a clear shot, but sent it over the goal.
Northwestern had an opportunity of their own. In the 68th minute, the Wildcats were able to put together a series of passes to move the ball up the field. Henry Herrill sent the ball across the box and was headed towards the goal but Mauro was able to come up with the save.
The Cardinals continued their pressure and testing the Northwestern defense. In the 85th minute, Mares broke through the back four of the Wildcats, but Miller came out and made the sliding stop to keep the game all square. Louisville stayed composed and determined to get the game winner. Less than a minute later Mares broke through the defense once again and sent the ball to the back post of the goal. The ball was kicked and knocked in by the Northwestern defender for the game winning own goal.
Northwestern came back and applied some pressure on the Cardinals defense, but Louisville was able to hold on to the 2-1 victory.
The No. 10 Cards will travel to take on the No.2 Maryland Terps on December 1st at 5PM in College Park.