Nov. 15, 2013
Photo Gallery | BIG EAST Semifinal 1 Quotes | Box Score
CHESTER, Pa. -
The first BIG EAST semifinal provided plenty of drama and excitement for college soccer fans as No. 4 Providence upset overall No. 1 seed Georgetown 0-0 (5-4) in penalty kicks at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. After 110 minutes of action on the pitch plus penalty kicks, the Friars came away with the draw and a ticket to the BIG EAST Championship game in the first semifinal contest on Friday evening. They'll get the opportunity to play for the 2013 conference tournament title and automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament.
With the outcome of tonight's contest, Providence improves to 12-4-3 overall while Georgetown moves to 13-4-2. Providence will face the winner of tonight's second semifinal game where No. 2 Marquette will take on No. 6 Butler at 8:30 p.m. The advancing teams will square off on Sunday for the BIG EAST Championship which will be televised live nationally on Fox Sports 2 at 12:30 p.m.
Providence's Mac Steeves began the kicks and found the back of the net to begin, while Georgetown's Steve Neumann matched the effort to keep the first round even at 1-1. PC's Julian Gressel stepped up for another good effort in the second round while Alex Muyl missed high to give the Friars an early edge after round two. PC's Anthony Baumann's kick was saved low for the start of round three, while the Hoyas converted on Brandon Allen's attempt to keep the kicks tied at two apiece.
Both sides found the back of the net in the fourth and fifth rounds as the kicks went into the high-pressure sixth effort. Providence junior defender Thomas Ballenthin nailed a shot low through the middle before Georgetown needed to step up to match the pace to continue kicks. Georgetown freshman Joshua Yaro was chosen to take the attempt for the Hoyas, but the shot was saved by Friar goalkeeper Keasel Broome for the game-winning play to solidify the draw.
Following an additional 20 minutes of extra time through the first and second overtime periods, Providence held the upper hand on the stat sheet and tallied a 4-1 advantage in shots and a 2-1 advantage in corner kicks.
Both teams had plenty of opportunities in 90 minutes of regulation, but strong goalkeeping and stingy defensive efforts for both squads kept the score at 0-0. The first stanza favored the Friars who took five shots to the Hoyas four and placed three on goal. In the 36th minute, Providence's Markus Naglestad (Kristiansand, Norway) had a golden chance off a free kick but Georgetown's Tomas Gomez (Webster Groves, Mo.) came off his line to make one of his three first half saves to preserve the score.
With time winding down in the first stanza, the Hoyas made one last push off a corner kick in the 44th minute but couldn't capitalize as the teams held on for a scoreless first half at intermission.
Physical play dominated the storyline throughout the match and came to a head in the second half. In the 59th minute, GU freshman Alex Muyl (New York, N.Y.) took one of his three shots on goal for the half but Providence keeper Keasel Broome (Claymont, Del.) came up with the save. The Hoyas immediately looked for a second opportunity from senior Steve Neumann (New Hope, Pa.), but Broome once again came up with the save to keep the Friars in the contest.
Georgetown continued to pressure the Providence defense in the last ten minutes of regulation, with Myul and teammate Cole Seiler (Anderson, S.C.) finding chances. Myul tried to sneak shot near post a while Seiler's header just four minutes later in the 84th minute was stopped by a Providence defensive save on the line.
Defensively, Providence's Broome tallied five saves while Georgetown's Tomas Gomez posted seven stops in the contest. The Friars were led by Naglestad's five shots and three shots on goal.