Cincinnati (WHAS) -- The No. 14 Louisville (12-4-1) men’s soccer team scored in the final seconds to defeat Cincinnati 1-0 Saturday night in Gettler Stadium. The Cardinals finish BIG EAST play with a 7-1-0 record to clinch their third BIG EAST Red Division title.
Louisville threatened early in the first half, with a good combination play getting Zach Foxhoven into the box along the left side, one on one with Bearcat keeper Taylor Hafling. His left-footed shot from a harsh angle was cleared away by the sophomore goalkeeper in the 14th minute.
The Bearcats had a chance in the 24th minute but Cardinal keeper Mike Mauro came up with the save on Matt Bahner’s shot. Mauro made another save in the 37th minute to end the half in a scoreless tie.
Cincinnati finished the first half with a 5-2 shot advantage and a 1-0 corner kick advantage. Mauro finished with two saves while Hafling finished with one.
UC's best chances came early in the second half. In the 52nd minute, the Bearcats were threatening and Louisville keeper Mike Mauro came off his line and outside the box to clear a through ball off the foot of Leon Powell. The ball stayed in play and Cole DeNormandie was free from 35 yards out. He lofted a shot over a retreating Mauro, but caught the side netting just a foot or so wide.
The Cardinals started to press offensively in the final 20 minutes. Buck Tufty had a shot saved by Hafling in the 70th minute. Then Foxhoven had a shot go wide in the 74th minute and Greg Cochrane had a shot blocked in the 75th minute.
Foxhoven forced Hafling into action again in the 77th minute. The Cardinals had possession in UC's defensive third and knocked the ball around, finally finding Foxhoven about 15 yards out on the left side. He fired a shot that Hafling was able to get a hand on and guide out of harm's way.
The Cardinals continued to press forward. With 3.8 seconds remaining in the match, Paolo DelPiccolo took a free kick from 30 yards out that bent inside the box and Brock Granger flicked the ball in for the game-winner. It was Granger’s first collegiate goal.
Cincinnati finished the match with a 13-10 shot advantage while both teams finished with eight shots each in the second period. Mauro finished with four saves while Hafling finished with three.
Louisville earns the top seed and will have a bye in the first round of the tournament, hosting the quarterfinal round Saturday, Nov. 3 in Cardinal Park at 7:00 p.m.