The University of Wisconsin mens soccer team (8-10-0, 2-4-0 Big Ten) defeated Northwestern 2-1 Sunday in the final regular season game of the year. Goals from Nick Caronna (Brookfield, Wis.) and Victor Diaz (Madrid, Spain) led the Badgers to secure the six seed in next weeks Big Ten tournament. The UW and Michigan finished the regular season tied for fifth, but with a tiebreaker going to the Wolverines, Wisconsin will take the sixth seed in the tournament.
We played as close to a complete game as we could have, said head coach Jeff Rohrman. After giving up a goal in the first half, we bounced back, scored quickly and then played very well to keep control of the game the rest of the way.
NU struck first as Adam Sirois scored in the 39th minute off assists from Gerardo Alvarez and Brad North to give the Wildcats the 1-0 lead.
With less than two minutes left in the first half, Caronna was able to find the back of the net as he beat NU goalkeeper Will Briley to his left and kept the ball on the ground out of reach to tie the game 1-1 heading into the half.
Even after Wisconsin controlled most of the second half, the score remained 1-1 heading into the last minute of play. With only 45 seconds left, Diaz was able to get the ball on a fast break in front of the NU goal. After Briley went to challenge, Diaz scooped the ball over him, while keeping it just low enough to drop it into the goal behind the keeper.
Victor played great today, as he has the past few games now, said Rohrman. Now we need to take this momentum into the Big Ten tournament and continue playing well.
UW goalkeeper Jake Settle (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) ended the game with six saves, while Briley recorded nine for NU.
The Badgers set their sights once again on the reigning NCAA champions Indiana as their first round competition in the 2005 Big Ten Tournament. The Badgers and Hoosiers will play Thursday, Nov. 10. If the Badgers win they will play the winner of the Ohio State-Northwestern game in the semifinals on Friday.