MILLERSVILLE, Pa. – The Urbana University men’s soccer team captured the first NCAA tournament win in school history with a 1-0 shutout of second-seeded Millersville on Sunday.
The third-seeded Blue Knights entered a hostile environment at Pucillo Field and escaped victorious on a Ben Fitzpatrick game-winner in the 37th minute.
“I’m extremely excited for our guys,” UU head coach Nick Roberts said. “They’ve worked so hard and to come out with a win like this means a lot for our program. Give a ton of credit to Millersville, Fitzy came up with the game-winner and we were fortunate to hold on the rest of the way after they pressured us at the end.”
UU (13-4-2) advances to the third round where it will face the Atlantic Region’s top seed and MEC champion Charleston. The Blue Knights will be aiming to tie the program record for most wins in a season when they take the pitch at Schoenbaum Stadium, on either Thursday or Friday.
With roughly 30 minutes left in Sunday’s win, the Blue Knights were forced to move 10 back on defense as Millersville built momentum and controlled possession with 11 of its 12 shots coming in the second half.
UU goalkeeper Nate Jones stayed calm in goal for the Blue Knights and registered four saves. His biggest stop came with three minutes left as he dove to his right and pummeled the ball before it crossed the line.
The Blue Knight back line, which consisted of all-conference performers Aaron Burt and Callum Kerswell-Reid, along with Tom Walbeoff, dominated inside the UU box and limited the Marauders to only one shot in the first half.
Shots were equal at 12-12 overall, but UU made its presence felt by attempting 10 corner kicks.
Fitzpatrick netted his fourth goal of the season on a through-ball from Raoui Lassoued, as he struck a low liner to the bottom left corner.
UU finished with six shots on goal and was whistled for 15 fouls. Millersville had four shots on goal and was called for 11 fouls.
“We’ll get back to campus tonight, and then we’ll have a few days to train before taking on Charleston. It’ll be another exciting week for us.”