The Orange fall to the Irish

After SU earned a two-goal lead, the Irish scored four unanswered in the second half to snatch victory away from the Orange.

The Syracuse University men’s soccer team (12-6-0, 5-3-0 Big East) lost 4-2 to the No. 7 Notre Dame Fighting Irish Saturday, Nov. 3.

The loss knocks Syracuse out of the Big East Tournament.

SU made its first Big East Tournament appearance since 2005.

The chilly weather didn’t hold back the SU offense in the first half as senior midfielder and co-captain Ted Cribley netted his fourth goal of the season at the 14:24 mark.

The crowd of 1675 at the SU Soccer Stadium carried the Orange to a 1-0 lead at the half.

Syracuse opened the second half after senior forward Louis Clark netted his second goal of the season. The Fighting Irish, however, were not about to let their hopes at a number-one seed in the NCAA tournament slip away.

Notre Dame took the crowd and SU’s momentum away when freshman forward Patrick Hodan and senior midfielder Kyle Richard scored their fifth and second goals of the season at the 62:52 and 63:11 marks, respectively.

The Fighting Irish proceeded to control the rest of the game and ultimately put it out of reach once Hodan netted his second of the game (sixth of the season) and senior forward Ryan Finley netted Notre Dame’s fourth goal of the game.

“[Notre Dame] kept the ball well and found pockets in between the defense,” Cribley said. “That was key for them.”

Senior forward Lars Muller said the Irish were able to come back because they kept attacking.

“Their fullbacks pushed really high in the second half and created a lot of chances for them,” Muller said.

Freshman goalkeeper Alex Bono had seven saves against Notre Dame, but the Fighting Irish bombarded the net with 21 shots.

“[Bono] made some great saves in the first half, but you [can’t hold them off] the entire game,” Muller said.

The Orange’s chances at an NCAA Tournament berth hangs in the balance after its early exit from the Big East Tournament.

“If we’d won this game, we’d definitely be in the [NCAA Tournament],” Muller said.  Is “Now all we can do is wait and keep working.”

SU head coach Ian McIntyre, however, believes his team still has a chance of playing in the tournament, he said.

“We just played the number-one RPI team in the country,” McIntyre said. “We’ll see how that shakes down in the next few days.”

Notre Dame moves on to play the winner of tomorrow’s contest between Connecticut and Villanova next Syracuse.

Syracuse will know if it will play in the NCAA Tournament Monday, Nov. 12.

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