WASHINGTON — Second-seeded Georgetown (17-2-1) needed extra time, but managed to keep its impressive season going defeating fourth-seeded Marquette (16-3-1) 2-1 in double overtime on Friday evening at PPL Park in Chester, Pa., in the semifinals of the Big East championship.
“This was a tough game for both teams, anyone could have come away a winner,” Georgetown head coach Brian Wiese said. “Marquette made adjustments from our first game and we made adjustments from our first game so it made it more difficult for both of us. These were two teams that knew each other well playing in a tight game and I’m glad we came out on top.”
The No. 10/7 Golden Eagles looked strong to open the game forcing Georgetown goalkeeper Tomas Gomez to make a pair of early saves. MU continued to shoot, but the No. 4/6 Hoyas had chances off of setpieces.
The Hoyas got on the board first in the 45th minute to take the lead. Senior defender Jimmy Nealis came up from his left back position and slid the ball across the box to junior forward Steve Neumann. As MU keeper Charlie Lyon came off his line, Neumann saw an opportunity and fired low to the far left post getting it in to make it 1-0.
The Golden Eagles looked for the tie, but couldn’t find the equalizer as the teams went into the half with Georgetown leading 1-0.
Early in the second, Marquette found an opportunity to tie it up. In the 57th minute, Bryan Ciesiulka found the foot of Adam Lysak at the top of the box and Lysak shot right at the goal getting it past Gomez to make the score 1-1.
The Marquette goal seemed to energize the Hoyas who dominated offensive play for the remainder of regulation, but neither team was able to find the game winner forcing extra time.
The first ten minutes of overtime were quiet with MU getting the only shot off as it went high and both squads were showing fatigue. Despite tired legs, they continued pushing and went into the next ten.
Marquette had its chances in the second overtime as the squad tried to counter and Georgetown managed looks as well with junior forward Gabe Padilla getting the best shot off. However, the game winner came off of a set piece for the Blue & Gray in exciting fashion.
Neumann served the ball into the box and senior defender Tommy Muller flicked it with his head into the box. The ball went to the foot of freshman forward Brandon Allen in the middle of the box and Allen volleyed it out of the air with his left foot into the corner of the net to give the Hoyas the sudden death victory with just one minute remaining before penalty kicks.
The Hoyas rushed the field celebrating the 2-1 double overtime win.
Georgetown outshot Marquette 20-17, but had just six shots on goal to MU’s seven. GU held a 7-5 advantage in corner kicks and Gomez took the win in the net with six saves, while Lyon took the loss with four stops to his credit.
Sunday will be just the fourth time the Hoyas have been in the championship game with an all-time mark of 0-3. The previous appearance was in 1999 when the Blue & Gray lost 2-0 to Connecticut. The other two losses came against St. John’s in 1998 and 1994.
Earlier this season, Georgetown fell to UND in South Bend, Ind., 3-0.
“We are just focusing on preparing ourselves for Sunday since we have less than 48 hours to get our legs ready,” Wiese said. “No matter who we play, we know it will be one of the best teams in the country and it will be a huge challenge.”