November 17, 2013

RHIT Men's Soccer Upsets No. 1 Ohio Wesleyan in NCAA Tournament 2nd Round

Release courtesy of Rose-Hulman

DELAWARE, OH -- With Mike Smyser's goal in the first five minutes of play and an urelenting defensive effort, the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology men's soccer team pulled off the biggest upset in program history with Saturday's 1-0 win over No. 1 and previously undefeated Ohio Wesleyan in the second round of the NCAA Division III tournament. 

Rose-Hulman (12-5-5) advances to the NCAA sectional round, where it will face the winner of the 5 p.m. matchup between Franklin & Marshall and Dickinson.The match will take place between Nov. 22-24, with the time, date and site to be announced.

Smyser (Grand Rapids, Mich./Forest Hill Northern) scored the match's first goal in just the 5th minute of play, taking a cross from the left from Ben Green (Frisco, Texas/Centennial) to the top right of the box. Smyser made one move and found the upper left corner to give the Engineers a 1-0 lead that would hold until halftime. 

Ohio Wesleyan (19-1-3) controlled much of the first half after the score, as the Bishops outshot Rose-Hulman by a 23-4 margin. Engineers junior keeper Drew Miller (Cincinnati, Ohio/Bishop Fenwick) tallied all of his three saves in the first half to help his squad keep the lead.

With the wind at the their backs in the second half, the Engineers' back line of Andrew Bartush (Granger, Ind./Penn), Spencer Johnson (Yorkville, Ill./Aurora Christian), Nick Kowalkowski (New Lenox, Ill./Lincoln Way) and Max Brown (Atlanta, Ga./Chamblee Charter) held strong despite a barrage of crosses and shots from the Bishops in the final minutes. 

Rose-Hulman advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history with Thursday's match against Penn State Behrend, when the teams battled to a 0-0 draw before the Engineers advanced 9-8 in the penaly kick round. Saturday's victory marks another first, as the Engineers head to the sectional round for the first time.