[NCAA DIVISION I MEN]SubDarren Yeagle had his first career multiple-goal game, scoring both goals for Indiana in a 2-0 win over Louisville in the first round of the NCAA Men's Tournament Thursday night. The win avenged a 4-0 loss to the Cardinals a month earlier.
Indiana (11-9-1) will play host to No. 12 seed Butler on Sunday at 2 p.m. at Armstrong Stadium. The win marked Indiana's 75th NCAA Tournament victory.
"This is the way it is supposed to feel," said IU coach Mike Freitag. "We played as a team, we followed the game plan and everybody did their job. We fought, and that is a very good team we beat. It is a team I admired this year. I thought we defended very well today. They had possession, but they didn't get a whole lot of shots on goal."
Yeagle's game-winner came at exactly 57:00 when he poked a header into the lower left past goalkeeper Andre Boudreaux. The play began with a run up the right side from Lee Hagedorn, who then dished off to Ofori Sarkodie who has made a run forward from his backline position. Sarkodie lofted a perfect serve to Yeagle, who was all alone on the back post.
"I love it," Yeagle said. "I am glad it was Louisville. I haven't been able to play them since my freshman year. I scored on them, but then I was hurt and didn't play much in the last game. It felt good getting that goal."
"We've played each other so many times, and Ken Lolla and Brian Maisonneuve are talented coaches and they had their team prepared," Sarkodie said.
Yeagle's second goal of the match and fifth score of the season came with under three minutes left in the match off a feed from Eric Alexander. Alexander played the ball up to Yeagle on the left side, and he slotted it under the keeper for the decisive score.
"I looked up and there was no one close to me so I took it to goal," Yeagle said. "I saw Will (Bruin) making a back post run and the guy committed to him, so I just slotted it to the far post and it went under the goalie. It wasn't a great shot, but it went in."
Coming in off the bench in the first half, Yeagle finished with two shots.
The game marked a decisive turnaround from the meeting between the schools during the regular season as the Hoosiers fell 4-0 to the Cardinals in Louisville on Oct. 21. Indiana now leads the all-time series with Louisville 16-2.
"We just didn't come to play that night," Yeagle said. "We knew tonight the first 15 minutes were going to be a deciding factor."
The first half was relatively uneventful for both squads as IU held a slight 5-4 advantage in shot attempts. With 22 minutes to go, Andy Adlard made a run before laying off the ball to Will Bruin, who sent his attempt wide right.
Just two minutes later, Louisville had a dangerous attempt when Mark Knight took on IU goalkeeper Luis Soffner 1v1, but Soffner came up with the save, one of two on the night for the freshman. Soffner picked up his eighth shutout of the season.
"Our defense was playing well enough but with all (Louisville's) crosses I knew tonight was a night I had to be aggressive in the back," Soffner said. "I didn't want anything to fall in between the penalty spot and the six-yard box. My mindset going into it was to be more aggressive and I know I had a lot of balls in the air."
With six minutes to go in the first half, Bruin nailed a header off an Adlard corner kick that just went high to deny the Hoosiers the score. Bruin finished with a team-best seven shots, two of which were on frame.
With Indiana clinging to a 1-0 lead and 31:50 left to play in regulation, sophomore defender made a goal-saving sliding block on a shot from Louisville's Colin Rolfe that kept the Cardinals off the board. Indiana has now posted nine shutouts this season.