Xavier Advances Past Dayton In A-10 Semis On Penalty Kicks

Justin Marshall made two stops in the PK shootout to lift Xavier over Dayton.

Justin Marshall made two stops in the PK shootout to lift Xavier over Dayton.

Nov. 8, 2012

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -The first postseason meeting between three-seed Xavier and six-seed Dayton came down to wire as the No. 15/14 Musketeers pulled out a 3-2 penalty kick shootout win after ending the Atlantic 10 Quarterfinal in a 1-1 draw.

The two-time defending champions  advance to the tournament semifinals where they will take on second-seed Saint Louis at 5 p.m. on Friday. Xavier won the regular season match against the Billikens 3-2.

Matt Walker scored the Musketeers' lone goal of the match in the 56th minute to pull Xavier even after falling behind in the first half. Walker closed in on the goal after receiving a pass from Luke Spencer and slipped a right-footed shot to the back corner for the equalizer. It was Walker's 10th goal of the season and Spencer's seventh assist.

Daniel Berko gave the Flyers the lead in the 25th minute as he finished on a hard low cross that XU goalkeeper Justin Marshall wasn't able to contain.

There were very few scoring chances for either team in the match as both teams battled through the middle of the pitch. Garrett Halfhill was reliable as always for Xavier as he helped to control Dayton's high-powered attack.

Walker, who was named to the A-10 First Team on Wednesday, was the only Musketeer to place two shots on goal. He had six shots overall off the bench.

Marshall came up big in the shootout making two stops, including the final Dayton attempt, to secure the third shootout victory in the last three seasons at the A-10 Tournament for Xavier. Spencer, Nick Hagglund and James Queree each converted their chances to give Xavier the edge.

Xavier held advantages in both shots (15-8) and corner kicks (8-3). Shots on goal were even at three.