Judges are Final Four Bound Again!
No. 20 Brandeis University men's soccer senior Patrick Flahive (Chatham, Ill./Worcester Academy) scored the game-winning goal with just over a minute remaining in the second overtime period today as the Judges defeated rival Tufts University, 1-0, in the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Tournament today. With the win, the Judges improve to 17-4 and return to the Final Four for the second year in a row. The Jumbos' hope of back-to-back national titles comes to an end with a 15-2-4 record.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Brandeis and Tufts were evenly matched in the first half, with the Jumbos earning a 5-4 edge in shots, but the Judges putting four on frame compared to just one for the home team.
- Brandeis senior Josh Ocel (North Attleboro, Mass./Worcester Academy) put a shot on net in the 33rd minute that was dangerous but stopped by Tufts netminder Conner Mieth.
- In the 42nd minute, it was Brandeis senior Ben Woodhouse (Suffield, Conn./Suffield) who came off his line to deny a 3-on-3 break by the Jumbos and keep the game scoreless at the half.
- In the second stanza, the home team controlled play outshooting Brandeis 10-5, including 6-1 on net.
- Woodhouse's six saves included a sterling job in the 82nd minute to come off his line and deny Tufts' Brett Rojas in a one-v-keeper situation.
- The Judges had two late shots, but Mieth stoned Ocel in the 89th minute, and senior Josh Berg had a ball blocked on the rebound.
- The overtime periods saw some end-to-end play, but not a ton of serious threats.
- In the 98th minute, Tufts' Kevin Halliday had an opportunity when he turned and shot with an open net, but sent the ball high.
- The Judges caught a break with just about six minutes to play in the second overtime, when a Tufts player caught his second yellow of the game forcing the Jumbos to play a man down the rest of the way.
- Brandeis was able to press the advantage a bit over the remainder of the game, paying off with just over a minute to go.
- Senior Josh Berg (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) played a long ball from just beyond midfielder toward the box, not quite reaching the 18. Mieth and Brandeis senior Mike Lynch (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) both went after it, and though Mieth got there first, he didn't put a great foot on the ball.
- Brandeis senior Flahive took advantage, sending a 30-yard shot into the unattended goal, putting the Judges into the Final Four.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
- Tufts finished with a 17-12 edge in shots, with corner kicks even at 5-5.
- Woodhouse finished with seven saves, including six in the second half. He recorded his 23rd career shutout and 39th career win, both second all-time.
- Mieth made six stops, but allowed only his second goal all season.
- The Jumbos had not conceded a goal since September 30th, and that was an own goal. They had not surrendered a goal in 12-straight games.
- The goal was Flahive's sixth of the season and the 15th of his career, nine of which have been game-winners. Four of his six goals this season were game-winners.
THE FINAL FOUR
- Brandeis is in the Final Four for the second year in a row and fifth time in school history.
- The Judges won a national title in 1976, finished second in 1984 and third in 1981. They were eliminated in the semifinals last season.
- The previous four trips to the Final Four came under head coach Mike Coven, while this trip goes to his successor Gabe Margolis, an 11-year assistant under Coven before taking the reins in January.
- This marks the second year in a row Brandeis eliminated the defending national champions, as they took out Amherst on penalty kicks in 2016.
- The Judges will take on national powerhouse Messiah College on December 1 in Greensboro, North Carolina, at 7:30 p.m.
This will be the first-ever meeting between the Judges and Falcons.
Brandeis Sports Information