The Virginia Cavaliers men’s soccer team is headed to the College Cup for the 13th time in program history after dispatching the 8th seeded SMU Mustangs in a 3-2 overtime thriller at Klockner Stadium Friday night. Axel Gunnarsson gave the Hoos at 1-0 lead midway through the first half that lasted well into the second half. In the 70th minute, SMU’s Gabriel Costa scored the equalizer on a penalty kick after a UVA handball in the box. Virginia regained the lead just seven minutes later after Daryl Dike was fouled in the box and Joe Bell converted the subsequent penalty kick to give the Cavaliers a 2-1 advantage. The Mustangs tied the game once again with under seven minutes to play on a header by Henrik Bredeli, which sent the quarterfinal match to overtime. Four minutes into the Golden Goal overtime period, Daryl Dike was again fouled in the box. Bell’s penalty kick attempt was initially saved by the SMU goalkeeper but Bell put the rebound in the back of the net to give Virginia the victory and send the Hoos to the College Cup for the first time since 2014. This is the fourth Virginia Cavaliers team to reach the “final four” of their respective NCAA tournament in 2019, joining the Virginia men’s basketball, men’s lacrosse, and field hockey teams. Virginia will play the winner of UC Santa Barbara and Wake Forest on December 13th at 6:00pm in Cary, North Carolina in the NCAA semifinals.
Produced by Matt Newton