LEXINGTON, Va. – The Washington and Lee men's soccer team moved on to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament after advancing on penalty kicks (5-4), following a 3-3 draw against Oglethorpe on Sunday afternoon at Watt Field.
W&L (15-4-2) converted five of its seven penalty kicks to get passed the Stormy Petrels (17-2-2). Senior defender Sterling Kirk (San Francisco, Calif. / Stuart Hall/ Hotchkiss) netted the Generals first shot, and then senior goalkeeper Gillen Beck (Blacksburg, Va. / Blacksburg) stopped Oglethorpe (17-2-2) senior goalkeeper Luke Whelan's shot to give W&L a 1-0 lead. Junior midfielder Dylan Ritch (Mint Hill, N.C. / Independence) missed W&L's second attempt, while junior forward Ryan Marcano made OU's to tie it at 1-1.
W&L senior midfielder Andrew Kim (Blacksburg, Va. / Blacksburg) and Oglethorpe junior midfielder Topher Marshall each converted on the third attempt to keep it tied (2-2). Junior midfielder Will Hamryka (Dawsonville, Ga. / Greater Atlanta Christian School) scored the fourth PK and Beck came up with a big save on sophomore forward Tyler Castor to give the Generals a 3-2 lead. Junior midfielder Viktor Dolberg (Clovis, Calif. / Buchannan) missed W&L's fifth penalty kick and sophomore forward Gabriel Alvarez converted on Oglethorpe's attempt to tie it at 3-3.
Beck and junior forward Devon Patterson each netted the sixth PK to keep it even at 4-4. First-year midfielder Harris Salom (Blacksburg, Va. / Blacksburg) buried the seventh shot and Beck made a key stop on junior midfielder Rob Bonet's shot to put the Generals into the next round.
Senior midfielder Kevin Molnar (Mendham, N.J. / Delbarton School) gave the Blue and White an early lead at the 12:06 mark after he headed the ball into the back of the net off of a free kick taken by Hamryka just outside the 18-yard box.
The Stormy Petrels evened the score, 1-1, in the 17th minute when an Oglethorpe player was taken down inside the box and Alvarez converted the penalty kick. W&L took a 2-1 lead 10 minutes later when Hamryka fired the ball into the back of the net from outside the 18-yard box in the 27th minute.
Oglethorpe was awarded another penalty kick at the 32:21 mark after a Stormy Petrel was tripped inside the box. Alvarez netted his second goal of the contest and knotted the score, 2-2, heading into intermission.
The Generals took a 3-2 lead after junior defender Will Rowson (Fairfax, Va. / Robinson Secondary School) played the ball to Salom inside the box. Salom blasted the ball into the lower corner of the net in the 58th minute to push W&L back in front. Just 32 seconds later Alvarez completed a hat trick for Oglethorpe and evened the contest, 3-3. He received the ball at the top of the 18-yard box from sophomore midfielder Andrew Grodhaus and fired it into the upper right corner of the net at the 59:25 mark.
Both teams had good looks at goal in the overtime periods, but could not come up with the game-winner, sending the contest to a penalty kick shootout. W&L and Oglethorpe each took 17 shots in the game, while the Generals held a slim 4-3 advantage in corner kicks. Beck played the full 110 minutes for the Blue and White and made seven saves. Whelan also played the entire contest in goal for the Stormy Petrels and made three stops.
The Generals will be making their first appearance in the Sweet 16 since 2000. W&L fell to Christopher Newport, 1-0, in the South Regional Finals that season.
Washington and Lee will find out on Sunday night its opponent and where it will play the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight contests on Nov. 17-19.
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