The No. 25 Washington men’s soccer team was eliminated in the first match of the NCAA tournament for the second consecutive year after going scoreless through regulation and overtime.
Lipscomb beat the Huskies 5-4 in penalty kicks to advance, ending Washington’s four game win streak and season.
“It’s 50-50 chance usually in PK shootouts,” UW senior Quentin Pearson said. “Heartbreak for one team, unfortunately it was us.”
Both teams brought out fresh goalkeepers for the shootout, and it started well for Washington. The Huskies (12-8) scored on their first three attempts, taking a 3-2 lead on the Bisons, who missed their first attempt. After that first shot, Lipscomb scored four straight, and with the Huskies missing their fourth attempt it was tied after five. The Huskies missed their sixth attempt, and Lipscomb scored a fifth consecutive penalty kick to advance to the second round.
In regulation, the Huskies outshot Lipscomb 13-4, and had 8-0 advantage in shots on goal, but couldn’t manage to slip a goal past Chris Zappia. While the first half didn’t see a lot of action at either net, the second half was all Washington against the Lipscomb goalkeeper.
Early in the half, the Huskies had a flurry of shots on goal that were all denied by Zappia. Two came from freshman Dylan Teves, who led the team with four shots, all in the second half. The dominant play continued from the Huskies continued throughout the half, with nine of Washington’s 13 shots taking place after the first half, but the dominant play from Zappia continued as well.
“Their keeper made some unbelievable saves,” said Washington coach Jamie Clark. “Credit to him. It takes big plays and unfortunately for us, the big plays were by their goalkeeper.
“Until late in the game, when legs got tired, we barely gave up a chance,” Clark said. “We didn’t give them many opportunities to actually play and get behind us. Defensively we were very good. In attacking, you just have to take opportunities and in the final third we came up short tonight.”
Most of the first overtime was spent in the Husky end, and though only one Lipscomb shot showed up on the scoresheet, it had several good chances close to the net before Washington was able to turn the game to the other side of the field.
“Beginning of the first overtime, they definitely put it on us, had a couple chances really low,” Pearson said. “Scary times, but I think we handled their pressure and were able to get out on the outlet and counterattack … unfortunately we weren’t able to finish any counterattacks.”
While the Huskies didn’t advance, their success on defense continued as they recorded a fifth straight shutout for the team’s longest scoreless streak since 1994.
“We felt like we deserved more, but Lipscomb bent and never broke,” Clark said. “Unless you score goals, you can’t put a game away. They hung in there and that was enough.”