SU men’s soccer draw with Louisville

SU men's soccer ties Louisville

Both teams were remained scoreless after two overtimes.
Published: September 16, 2019

At the end of a long 110 minutes of soccer, the Syracuse men’s soccer team once again fell short of beating Louisville. Yet, they also avoided a tally in the loss column.

The Orange and Cardinals ended the second overtime horn with no score. This marks the third time these two teams have had to settle for a draw in their six ACC meetings since 2014.

Is it a coincidence? No, just a very aggressive and hard-fought match between two competitive teams in the conference. Both were simply picking up where they left off in 2018.

Though neither team cracked the scoreboard, the referees seemed to have their hands full handing out yellow cards left and right. Each team earned five yellow cards.

The Orange came out strong and seemed to have what it was going to take to pull the upset card on the 20th ranked Cardinals. Early on, Sondre Norheim split the defense and set up a great look with a shot that went wide right. And in both the 10th and 22nd minute, the dangerously fast freshman Luther Archimede came close to putting the Orange up after great breaks on the ball near the net.

Just five minutes later, the team’s leading scorer Ryan Raposo got away a beautiful shot that was somehow saved by Louisville’s goalkeeper, Jake Gelnovatch.

The Orange had obvious momentum early.

Louisville eventually got deep in their offensive attack but on their brief stint, a perfect free kick by Leonard Getz was misplayed and it killed the Cardinals’ chance to get on the board.

In the second half, it started to sway back in Louisville’s favor as they controlled the ball for the majority of the half. A couple of key sliding tackles and deflections deep in Syracuse’s own end by defensemen Dylan McDonald, Matt Orr and Nyal Higgins saved the Orange.

As we approached the end of regulation, neither team really made a threat at the goal. It was evenly matched and exemplified a physical stalemate. Both defenses were tough to crack and it never seemed like either side had a clear distribution to the net.

That continued into the overtime periods.

One thing that stood out was a pair of game-saving sliding tackles by Matt Orr in the 93rd minute right in front of the net, and another by Dylan McDonald in the 97th minute. Each of those looks was one step away from breaking the hearts of all the Syracuse fans that stayed with the game until the end.

Eventually, the clock hit all zeroes yet again and a sign of both relief and frustration was beaming from the body language of players on both sides.

Relieved, because it was time to rest. Frustrated, because they all knew they had their chances to win.

Syracuse just came off a two-overtime tie in their last matchup with New Hampshire, while the Cardinals opened their season with a double-overtime thriller against Cleveland State a few weeks ago.

You could tell that these teams were dragging, and beat up, towards the end. Though that didn’t stop the effort from both sides, it absolutely played a factor.

Coming into the game, the Cardinals had a setback in the form of a 2-0 loss to South Florida. This came after taking down No. 3 Kentucky less than a week prior.

Through the first four matches, they were led by Cherif Dieye offensively, who had two goals and one assist and Louka Masset who had two goals as well. Both were played well by the Orange defense and made it a frustrating match for each.

The Cardinals jump right back into ACC play in a meeting with the Virginia Tech Hokies, while the Orange host a non-conference battle with Ivy League representative Cornell.

At the end of the night, the saga continues in this ACC showdown and we will have to wait until 2020 to see if Syracuse can take down the Cardinals.