Sophomore goalkeeper Colin Webb’s defense has been a big part of Indiana’s success this season. This time, it would be his offense that saved the Hoosiers.
Webb converted No. 6 Indiana’s fourth penalty kick attempt, then No. 2 Northwestern’s sophomore midfielder Drew Rosenberg missed as IU advanced 5-4 on penalty kicks Sunday in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinal in Evanston, Ill.
”Great result,” IU head coach Todd Yeagley said. “Penalties are a difficult way to finish a match.”
The Hoosiers (11-3-5) got on the board first when redshirt senior midfielder Dylan Lax scored on a shot from 25 yards out to put them ahead 1-0 in the 17th minute.
The lead lasted for 21 minutes before Wildcats (9-3-6) responded. Northwestern senior midfielder Nikko Boxall’s header tied the match at one in the 38th minute.
Neither team found the back of the net in the second half, which resulted in a 1-1 tie at the end of regulation and led to overtime for the fifth time in the last six meetings between the two programs. With a golden goal scenario, IU couldn’t manage to score in the first or second 10-minute overtime period.
”I thought our guys just stayed true and didn’t get frustrated,” Yeagley said. “They certainly created a lot of good chances. This was a tough matchup.”
In penalty kicks, IU and Northwestern traded scores before Rosenberg took the Wildcats’ final attempt. His shot went off the crossbar. >
But the Hoosiers weren’t without their chances, especially in the second overtime period. Winning the possession battle throughout the period, IU had three chances to tie the match.
Junior forward Andrew Oliver had three shot attempts in that overtime period, but each of his shots were blocked.
Oliver finished with a team-high four attempts. Overall, the Hoosiers finished with an 18-9 shot advantage over the Wildcats, with only three of the 18 being on goal compared to four for Northwestern. The 18 shots also tied for the second-lowest number of attempts over IU’s last five games.
”Today was a tough game with the wind and conditions,” Yeagley said. “The fields were obviously bouncy with turf. It didn’t make for a great game.”
With the result, IU protected its undefeated road record by improving to 8-0-1 away from home. It will face No. 2 Ohio State Friday in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals in College Park, Md.
”We’ve got a great semifinal matchup with Ohio State on Friday,” Yeagley said. “We’re looking forward to that and playing out in Maryland and continuing to move forward.”