Connect with us

College Soccer

FINAL: Indiana 2, Pitt 0 (NCAA Men’s Soccer College Cup Semifinal)

Photo courtesy NCAA Soccer
NCAA Men’s Soccer College Cup National Semifinal 

FINAL: Indiana 2, Pitt 0 

Match Stats

Summary

The Pitt Panthers coudn’t find any second half magic after falling behind by a couple of goals, falling to the Indiana Hoosiers in the NCAA Men’s Soccer College Cup semifinal played at WakeMed Park in Cary, NC, on Friday night.

Following a Matteo Malliefaud foul in the box on IU’s Herbert Fendeley, Ryan Wittenbrink scored on a rebound after a Joe van dar Sar saved penalty in the 14th minute.

Then in the final seconds of the first half, a Tommy Mihalic shot from the right edge of the endline that squeezed through the tightest of spaces were enough, as the Panthers were not able come up with an answer.

It’s now been 360 minutes since anyone has scored on Indiana, as Pitt couldn’t find any answers on the big stage.

“We couldn’t find our form or energy today. It was just bit off,” Jay Vidovich, Pitt’s Head Coach said.

“The first goal hurt us, but the second goal killed us. It was really tough hole to climb up.”

For all their possession (55%), the Panthers struggled to create a substantial number of scoring chances even as the game dragged on.

They registered just seven shots in 90 minutes and three on target, with a pair of Bertin Jacquesson chances were turned back in the second half by IU keeper J.T. Harms.

The Panthers suffered a semifinal lost to the Hoosiers for the second time in three seasons. Indiana will meet Syracuse at 6 p.m. ET Monday, Dec. 12 for the NCAA title. IU last won the national championship in 2012.

Look for a more detailed match report along with more reaction to follow. 

Update (10:48 p.m.)

Update (10:42 p.m.)

Update (10:40 p.m.)

Update (10:38 p.m.)

Update (10:33 p.m.)

Update (10:26 p.m.)

Update (10:19 p.m.)

Update (10:14 p.m.)

Update (10:12 p.m.)

Update (10:09 p.m.)

Update (10:02 p.m.)

Update (9:59 p.m.)

Update (9:40 p.m.)

Update (9:38 p.m.)

Update (9:25 p.m.)

Update (9:19 p.m.)

Update (9:12 p.m.)

Update (9:10 p.m.)

Update (9:05 p.m.)

Update (8:59 p.m.)

Update (8:52 p.m.)

Update (8:47 p.m.)

Update (8:46 p.m.)

Update (8:45 p.m.)

Update (8:38 p.m.)

Update (8:25 p.m.)

Update (8:20 p.m.)

Update (7:16 p.m.)

Update (7:07 p.m.)

Update (6:55 p.m.)

Match Day Updates

Follow along here for pre match activity, updates, starting lineups, in-game highlights/commentary and much more from WakeMed Park and back in Pittsburgh.


Preview

Here we go again!

For the second time in three seasons, Pitt and Indiana will face off in the NCAA DI Men’s Soccer College Cup National Semifinal.

In May 2021, the Hoosiers broke through with the only goal to hand the Panthers a heartbreaking 1-0 loss that dashed away their National Title hopes.

Now, both teams are back on the big stage, and each came into this Fall’s tournament a bit under the the radar, as Indiana was a No. 13 overall seed in the tournament, while Pitt was unseeded, as both teams had combined for eight losses and 11 draws during the regular season and in their respective postseason tournaments.

There are so many interesting match-ups and storylines going for this match.

Both sides made it to this point by doing what they do best.

For Pitt, they play an attractive, attacking style of play, with it’s dynamic French Connection of Bertin Jacquesson and Valentin Noel leading the way, scoring four goals and three assists in the last three tournament games.

In Indiana’s last three tournament matches, they’ve posted three straight clean sheets, going 270 minutes without surrending a goal.

Pitt is hoping to reach the National Championship game for the first time in program history, while the Hoosier soccer program is one of college soccer’s true bluebloods, as they are the winningest program in NCAA Men’s DI soccer history, with eight College Cup victories, with its last coming 10 years ago, in 2012.

Pitt Head Coach Jay Vidovich has reached the College Cup for the fifth time in his illustrious coaching career, and his second at Pitt. The veteran coach previously won a National Championship at Wake Forest (2007).

PSN’s College Cup Coverage

NCAA Men’s Soccer College Cup: Unfavored at start of tournament, veteran coaches lead Pitt and Indiana back to the big stage

One-time WPIAL stars provide added Western PA flavor at Men’s College Cup

Pitt’s Jay Vidovich Speaks on upcoming College Cup matchup vs Indiana

NCAA Men’s Soccer College Cup bound Panthers enjoy send off

 

Pitt Game Notes 

THE OPENING KICK

  • The Panthers continued their run in the 2022 NCAA Championships Saturday afternoon on their home turf as Valentin Noel headed home the game-winner in the 104th minute to give Pitt the 1-0 Quarterfinal win over Portland.
  • Pitt is now 12-4-5 overall on the year as they head to their second College Cup in three years. Friday night’s game against #13 Indiana is a rematch of the 2020 College Cup Semifinal, a game the Hoosiers won 1-0 thanks to a goal in the 78th minute.
  • Indiana enters the match Friday with a 13-4-6 overall record on the year as they collected NCAA Tournament wins over Saint Louis, Marshall and UNC Greensboro to advance to their 22nd College Cup in program history.
  • The dynamic French duo of Valentin Noel and Bertin Jacquesson have been on fire for the Panthers during their tournament run as they have combined for seven goals, two assists and 16 points across four NCAA Championship wins. Noel has four goals in the last three matches including the game-winner in the home victory over Portland Saturday as Jacquesson collected the primary assist on his 11th of the season.

THE SERIES – INDIANA

 This meeting marks the third between the two programs all-time with the Hoosiers owning the 2-0 series lead against Pitt.

  • The last meeting between the two teams came in the 2020 College Cup Semifinal as Indiana downed Pitt 1-0 thanks to a goal in the 78th minute.
  • The First meeting between the two teams was in 2019, a match Indiana won 3-2 in double overtime at home.
  • Head Coach Jay Vidovich is 1-3-0 all-time against Indiana. His lone victory against the Hoosiers came in 2015 as his Wake Forest team downed IU 1-0 to advance to the Elite Eight.

SCOUTING THE HOOSIERS

  • The Hoosiers enter Friday night’s match with a 13-4-6 overall record and a 3-1-4 B1G mark. They have collected three wins in a row after falling to Rutgers in the B1G Championship match.
  • Fifth year forward Ryan Wittenbrink is leading the Hosiers offensive attack as he has nine goals, nine assists and 27 points to go along with a team-high 54 shots on the year. He also ranks 5th in the NCAA with five game-winning goals on the year.
  • Tommy Mihalic ranks second on the squad with six goals, two assists and 14 points while Herbert Endeley has three goals, five assists and 11 points in 22 matches. Endeley netted the game-winner against Pitt in the 2020 College Cup Semifinal match.
  • In goal, JT Harms has earned eight straight starts while starting a total of 15 on the season. He owns a 8-3-4 overall record to go along with a .709 save percentage, 1.04 goals against average and five shutouts. So far in the NCAA Tournament, Helms has made six saves in three matches.

COLLEGE CUP BOUND: AGAIN

With their 1-0 double overtime win over Portland Saturday, the Panthers secured their second College Cup appearance in program history. Both of which have come in the last three years.

  • Pitt will take on a familiar foe in the Semifinal match Friday night as they also played Indiana in their first ever College Cup appearance in 2020, falling 1-0 in that Semifinal match.
  • Although the matchup is similar, Pitt has a completely new squad as only five current players were on the 2020-21 roster that played against Indiana in the College Cup. 23 players from that squad are no longer with the Pitt program, six of which are playing soccer professionally.
  • The five current players who played Indiana last time are Valentin NoelBertin JacquessonRodrigo AlmeidaFilip Mirkovic and Jackson Walti.
  • Noel, Jacquesson, Mirkovic and Walti all started the match, combining for six of the Panthers’ 14 shots in the loss.

PANTHERS IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT

 

  • This marks the fourth straight season and fourth time overall the Panthers have earn a bid in the NCAA Tournament.
  • The Panthers have now won at least one tournament game in all four seasons they have earned a bid.
  • Pitt has advanced to the Elite Eight in three straight seasons while earning a bid to the College Cup in two of the last three seasons.
  • Pitt currently owns a 10-2-1 record in NCAA Tournament games all-time.
  • Pitt has outscored their opponents 33-12 in NCAA Tournament matches. The Panthers have also secured six clean sheets in their 13 NCAA Tournament matches all-time.

Date                      Opponent           Result

11/21/20             Lehigh                   W, 2-0

11/24/20             at Georgetown  L, 5-0

5/2/21                  Monmouth         W, 6-1

5/6/21                  UCF                        W, 4-0

5/10/21                Washington        W, 3-0

5/14/21                Indiana                 L, 1-0

11/21/21             No. Illinois           W, 5-2

11/27/21             Hofstra                 W, 4-0

12/4/21                at Notre Dame   T, 1-1

11/17/22             Cleveland St.      W, 2-1

11/20/22             at Akron               W, 3-0

11/27/22             at Kentucky         W, 2-1

12/3/22                Portland               W, 1-0 (2OT)

PITT PLACES TWO ON ALL-REGION TEAM

 

  • The Panthers placed a pair of stu­dent-athletes on the All-South Re­gion First Team, marking the third straight year Pitt had multiple First Team honorees.
  • Valentin Noel earned the recog­nition for the third straight season while Filip Mirkovic earned his first All-Region honor of his career.
  • The Panthers have now had 18 All-Region honorees including 14 un­der the watchful eye of Jay Vidovich.

WALTI PLAYS 100TH CAREER MATCH

 

  • Graduate student Jackson Walti has been a stalwart in the central midfield for the Panthers since stepping foot on campus in 2018.
  • Walti went from a walk-on his first season, to one of the most reliable and talented players in Pitt program history. His work rate and the fact that he hasn’t missed a practice throughout his collegiate career makes Walti one of the most important players on the pitch each match.
  • The three-year captain currently leads all active NCAA Division I soccer players in minutes played with 8,979 career minutes for Pitt.
  • Walti is just 116 minutes shy of Erik Imler’s NCAA record for minutes played in a career (9,095 minutes).
  • Last time out, Walti played in his 100th career collegiate match. The milestone appearance is a program record for a Pitt player and also leads all active Division I players for games played.
  • This season, Walti has started all 21 matches at his holding midfield position and has played all but 14 minutes for the Panthers. He has added a career-high two goals and four points offensively as well.
  • A three-year team captain and native of Switzerland, Walti has appeared in 100 matches and started 97 across his career while adding six goals, five assists, 17 points and 48 shots.

 UP NEXT

  • With a win, Pitt would advance to their first ever National Championship match which would be on Monday, Dec. 12 at 6:00 pm at WakeMed Soccer Park. Monday’s Championship match will air on ESPNU.

PItt MF Michael Sullivan

Subscribe to PGH Soccer Now

Enter your email address to subscribe to PGH Soccer Now and receive notifications of new posts by email.

More in College Soccer