The ninth-seeded Ohio State men’s soccer team’s season came to an end on Sunday after a 3-1 loss against No. 8 Stanford in the third round of the NCAA tournament.
After a shaky start to the 2015 season, the Buckeyes got hot, building an eight-game win streak en route to an overall record of 13-7-3. The 13 victories are the second-most in program history.
With the win, the Cardinal improved to 16-2-2 overall and advanced to the quarterfinals.
Freshman midfielder Abdi Mohammed scored the Buckeyes only goal of the game in the second half, leveling the match at 1-1.
However, Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year and junior forward Jordan Morris netted two second-half goals to solidify the win for Stanford.
Stanford came out of the gates pressuring the Buckeyes, but the Scarlet and Gray held strong in the first half, preventing the Cardinal from scoring.
Morris, who is also a member of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer team, had the first good look of the half in the 17th minute, but his shot went off the side of the net.
OSU junior forward Danny Jensen had a clean look for the Buckeyes in the 23rd minute, but his strike missed to the left.
Despite a scoreless first half, the Cardinal were clearly the aggressor in the game, giving coach John Bluem’s squad reason to be concerned for the second half.
In the 48th minute, OSU junior defender and co-captain Tyler Kidwell made an unbelievable play — a goal-saving clearance in front of the net — to keep the Cardinal off the board.
However, Kidwell’s save was not enough for the Buckeyes, because just five minutes later, Stanford scored its first goal of the game.
Morris received the through ball and poked it in front of the net.
Although the Scarlet and Gray were down a point, they managed to remain calm and make a comeback.
In the 62nd minute, Mohammed tied the game with a header assisted by junior defender Austin Bergstrom.
Back-and-forth play ensued for roughly the next 15 minutes before Morris put his team back on top with another goal in the 78th minute.
With only 10 minutes left to play, the Buckeyes needed to score in order to stay in the game. Jensen attempted a header, but his shot was saved.
Stanford’s Corey Baird put the nail in the season’s coffin in the 88th minute when he scored off a turnover by the Scarlet and Gray.
Overall, shots were 19-11 in favor of Stanford, while the Cardinal also held a 5-1 lead in corners.
Despite the loss, OSU overcame a rough start to its 2015 season, earning the Big Ten regular season title and advancing to the Sweet 16 for just the fourth time in program history.
Regardless of the end result, it was a successful season for Bluem’s squad.