Second-seeded Urbana University dropped a 1-0 decision to third-seeded Notre Dame College in the Mountain East Conference men’s soccer semifinals Wednesday afternoon at UU Stadium. The Blue Knights were shut out for only the third time this season, and will now wait to see if they receive an NCAA postseason bid next week.
No. 18 UU (12-4-2) appeared in the No. 2 spot on this week’s official NCAA Atlantic Region rankings, where the top four teams are granted automatic berths to the NCAA playoffs. MEC rivals Charleston and Notre Dame College are first and third, respectively. The Division II men’s soccer selection show will be aired on Monday, Nov. 9 at 6 p.m.
Wednesday’s heavyweight bout with the Falcons featured a flurry of back-and-forth action. Both teams seemed to be amped up and played ultra-aggressively, especially in the first half with a combined 20 fouls.
Leo Paiva, the Falcons’ leading scorer, netted the game-winner in the 28th minute on a one-timer in the box. Renan Troccoli provided a perfect cross to give NDC the lead.
The Blue Knights out-shot the Falcons 12-9 overall, led by Mike McFarlane who fired five shot attempts. However, NDC stymied the UU attack in the second half and limited UU attackers Raoui Lassoued, Alex Zanotti and Ben Fitzpatrick to only two shots combined during the entire game.
This was NDC’s first win against UU this season as the Blue Knights claimed the two regular-season matchups.
UU goalkeeper Nathan Jones finished with three saves in goal. NDC’s Daniel Nagy racked up five stops.
Each team produced four corner kicks and picked up one yellow card.