Clemson Soccer faces Notre Dame in NCAA College Cup (Final Four) Friday

CUTrevor 2021-12-08 13:55:38

CLEMSON, S.C. —  The eighth-seeded Clemson men’s soccer team (15-5-1, 5-3 ACC) is slated to play 2021 ACC Champion and fourth-seeded Notre Dame (14-5-4, 4-2-2 ACC) in the College Cup national semifinal on Friday, December 10 at 6 p.m. at Wake Med Soccer Park in Cary, N.C. The match is televised on ESPNU and will also stream on the ESPN App. The team departs from the Clemson Soccer Operations Complex at 1 p.m. on Wednesday. Tickets for the match are still available at this link. 

This will be Clemson’s ninth all-time College Cup appearance, tying North Carolina for the sixth-most NCAA semifinal appearances, while Notre Dame cemented their second appearance. This marks the second matchup between the squads this year, with the Fighting Irish winning 2-0 at Historic Riggs Field on Oct. 9. The Tigers are currently 57-28-7 all-time in the NCAA tournament and Notre Dame is 21-20-4 during the NCAA tournament.

The winner of the game between Clemson and Notre Dame will face the winner of No. 2 Washington vs. No. 3 Georgetown in the National Championship match on Sunday, December 12 at 2 p.m. in the same venue. 

The Tigers advanced to the College Cup after upending No. 1 Oregon State in penalty kicks in the quarterfinal this past Sunday night in Corvallis, Ore. After dropping a goal in the 30th minute of the match, the Tigers battled to find the equalizer. With only six minutes remaining in regulation, Oskar Ägren found an opportunity in the box before drawing a foul. Luis Felipe Fernandez-Salvador walked up to the spot and crushed the ball into the upper left corner of the net, sending the game to overtime.
After two scoreless 10 minute overtime periods, both teams headed to penalty kicks, the first time for the Tigers this season. Senior goalkeeper George Marks shined yet again in the net, coming up huge for the Tigers and saving two of the Beaver’s penalty kicks while Isaiah Reid, Oskar Ågren, Hamady Diop and Justin Malou were all perfect from the penalty spot. Both of Marks’s saves came on diving efforts to the senior keeper’s right-hand side.

“Incredibly happy and proud of the team,” said Head Coach Mike Noonan. “Oregon State is a quality team that was deserving of the #1 ranking. We got stronger as the game went on, and I felt it fitting that we prevailed to advance. We spoke all week about doing something very hard. Trust, belief in each other and hard work carried the Tigers tonight. We couldn’t be happier to represent Clemson and the ACC in this year’s College Cup.”

Four Fighting Irish earned All-ACC accolades this year. Senior forward, Jack Lynn, is a member of the All ACC First-Team and recorded a total of 16 points on the season with 9 goals and 4 assists while senior defender Philip Quinton earned the All ACC Third-Team nod. Josh Ramsey and Matthew Roou found themselves on the All ACC Freshman team after enjoying successful campaigns in their first year in blue and gold.

Clemson is 3-4-1 in the NCAA semifinal. The last time the Tigers appeared in the College Cup was in 2015, a national championship match the Tigers lost to Stanford in Kansas City, Mo. 

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