Down a man, Virginia tops Marquette 3-1 to advance to quarterfinal play
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Despite playing a man down for the final 89 minutes, Virginia defeated Marquette 3-1 Sunday afternoon in the NCAA tournament's round of 16 at Klöckner Stadium.
The Cavaliers will be making their 18th trip to the quarterfinal round and their first since 2009 when the team went on to win the national championship.
Virginia advanced despite playing with just 10 men for the final 89 minutes after Matt Brown was shown a red card 57 seconds into the game when, as the last line of defense, he tackled C. Nortey from behind on a clear breakaway 35 yards outside the goal.
Scott Thomsen, Darius Madison and Todd Wharton each scored Virginia. UVa now has recorded 42 goals this year, its most since tallying 44 in 2007.
Marquette out-shot Virginia 13-11 but eight of the Cavaliers' shots were on goal. The Golden Eagles put four shots on goal. Marquette took seven corner kicks to four for UVa; the Golden Eagles also were called for 17 fouls, while UVa was credited with 10 fouls.
Virginia goalkeeper Calle Brown made three saves for the Cavaliers but was particularly effective in diffusing dangerous situations on corner kicks and crosses into the box. Marquette keeper Charlie Lyon made five saves.
Despite Virginia going down a man early, both teams had their share of possession throughout the match. Marquette had its best scoring opportunity of the first half in a wild flurry in the 20th minute. After a free kick Nortey had his short stop deflected away by Brown. Eric Pothast corralled the rebound near the goal line, but Brown made a sprawling save on the line to knock the shot away. The ball was sent back across the field to Bryan Ciesiulka, who fired a dangerous ball back into the box and on goal that Brown stepped up to grab and end the threat. Brown's three saves in the flurry proved to be his lone three saves of the match.
The Cavaliers scored first in the 24th minute off a free kick when Thomsen rifled a shot to the far upper 90 for his second score of the year and his first since the Cavaliers' season opener against Louisville.
Virginia quickly scored in the second half to take a 2-0 edge. After Eric Bird made a long drive down the left flank, he sent a cross into the box and found Madison, who sent a beautiful one-time volley past Lyon for a highlight-reel score. It was Madison's sixth goal of the year.
Marquette got on the board in the 53rd minute when Axel Sjoberg sent a great ball through the Cavaliers' back line and just into the box to connect with Nortey, who beat Brown from 15 yards for his 10th goal this season.
The Golden Eagles' goal appeared to be a major shift in momentum, but Virginia immediately countered just 20 seconds later to seize back control when Bird slipped a ball on the right flank through to Marcus Salandy-Defour, who made a strong run into the box and was taken down from behind by Paul Dillon to get the Cavaliers a penalty kick. Wharton then stepped to the spot and buried the penalty kick to give UVa a 3-1 edge.
UVa had chances to increase its lead even further as the second half progressed. In the 61st minute, Jordan Allen hit the crossbar with a shot, and Lyon stopped Allen's rebound shot. Madison created a chance in the 84th minute, but his hard, low shot toward the far post was saved by a diving Lyon.