Luke Spencer and the Musketeers celebrated their first NCAA victory on Thursday.
Nov. 15, 2012
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Senior Luke Spencer tallied a late goal and the No. 22 Xavier men's soccer team earned its first NCAA Tournament with a 1-0 victory over Kentucky on Thursday night at the UK Soccer Complex.
The Musketeers (14-2-5) advance to play 16-seed Indiana at 1 p.m. on Sunday in Bloomington, Ind. The game will be aired live on the Big Ten Network.
Spencer netted his league-leading 14th goal of the season on a counter attack in the 86th minute. The ball was carried down the field by the Walker twins who crossed the ball in the box and set up Spencer's one touch to the far post.
Xavier's third-ever NCAA Tournament match heavily favored the Musketeers who controlled the play through the midfield. The Musketeers connected passes and slowed Kentucky (10-9-2) throughout the match. The Wildcats' only shot on goal came in the opening minutes of the first half.
The Musketeers pushed forward in the first half and a flurry of scoring chances from Spencer, Matt Walker and Andrew Jordan that either missed or were saved. Xavier narrowly won the shot advantage (10-9) but held corner kicks (7-1) and shots on goals (4-1).
Matt Walker led all Xavier players with four shots with three on goal. His 10th assist makes him the second player in Division I to reach the season double digits in goals and assists. Matt Lodge had six shots for UK.
Justin Marshall (14-5-2) earned the shutout victory having made no saves but a great diving stop on a cross through the box.
Xavier improves to 6-0-1 when shutting out its opponent this season and 11-0-2 when winning the corner kick battle.
Sunday's meeting with the Hoosiers will be the first meeting between the two programs. Indiana finished the regular season and Big Ten Tournament with an 11-5-3 record. The Hoosiers have faced eight ranked programs this year.