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Notre Dame outlasts Virginia in double overtime

| Monday, October 26, 2020

The Notre Dame men’s soccer team outlasted Virginia in double overtime by a score of 2-1 on Saturday at Alumni Stadium. The Fighting Irish (3-2, 2-1 ACC) won on an own goal in the 103rd minute of the contest, giving them their second-straight ACC victory.

Notre Dame had not played since Oct. 11 due to the postponement of their Oct. 18 game against Virginia Tech as a part of COVID-related precautions. That game will be rescheduled on a mutually agreed upon date later in the season.

Sophomore forward Alex Gunnarsson opened the scoring with a goal assisted by freshman midfielder Rafael Caipo in the 22nd minute for Virginia (1-2-1, 1-2-1 ACC). The Cavaliers would take the 1-0 lead into halftime after not allowing a single shot on goal by the Irish in the first 45 minutes.

The second half was a very different story as Notre Dame fired seven shots, finding the back of the net on the leg of junior forward Jack Lynn in the 54th minute. It was the third goal of the season for Lynn, all of which he has scored in the last three games. Junior midfielder Patrick Coleman was credited with the assist.

Junya Kanemitsu | The Observer
Former Irish midfielder Mohammad Abualnadi dribbles by a defender during Notre Dame’s 4-2 win over Seattle on Sept. 6, 2019 at Alumni Stadium.

Notre Dame and Virginia played the rest of the second half scoreless, but it was not without its fair share of excitement. Both the Irish and Cavaliers had chances to claim the lead after the 80-minute mark, but big defensive plays on both sides kept the score level. Additionally, six yellow cards were handed out in the last 30 minutes of regulation, with three going to each team. Coleman, Lynn and freshman defender Paddy Burns were booked for the Irish.

The 133 fans in attendance were then treated to not one, but two overtime periods of free soccer. Following the first overtime, the Irish and Cavaliers were still stuck in a stalemate, but Notre Dame had chances to score the decisive goal. The Irish recorded three shots in the first extra period, forcing Virginia redshirt freshman goalkeeper Alex Rando to make one save. The Cavaliers only managed one shot in the period, but it was not on target.

Finally, in the 103rd minute, Notre Dame broke the deadlock. Sophomore defender Reese Mayer’s long throw into the box was deflected by junior defender Philip Quinton to senior midfielder Aiden McFadden, whose header deflected off a Virginia defender and into the back of the net.

The win propels Notre Dame into sole possession of second place in the North Region of the ACC. In the North they trail Pitt, the only undefeated team in the ACC. The Irish have the chance to close this gap when they visit Pitt in their next game Friday. Notre Dame and Pitt played earlier in the season in an independent contest when the Panthers came away victorious by a score of 3-1. The game against Pitt is just one of three remaining regular season games for the Irish, who host Louisville on Nov. 6 before — ACC standing willing — beginning the ACC Tournament on Nov. 15.

With the loss, Virginia drops into a tie with Louisville for third place in the North Region.

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