sports   |   men's soccer

Petts nets game-winning goal in overtime

Petts received a pass from junior midfielder A.J. Corrado along the right end line, and he took a couple touches moving to his left. From 19 yards away, his shot rolled just inside the left post to push the Hoosiers’ record to 2-0 in conference play.

Nittany Lions goalkeeper Emmanuel Martin watched the ball roll in as his team dropped their second consecutive match during the final minute.

“I was really, really happy,” Petts said. “We played a good game, especially in the first half. I thought we deserved it. It was good to get the win.”

After what IU Coach Todd Yeagley called a “45-minute performance” against No. 8 Notre Dame Wednesday night, Indiana and PSU kept one another off the scoreboard for 105 minutes.

In the 103rd minute, sophomore midfielder Kerel Bradford was shown a yellow card for the second time, taking him out of the game and leaving the Hoosiers one man down for the last few minutes.

Yeagley said he did not have to tell his team to adjust their formation, and Petts said Bradford made a couple of great decisions.

“Kerel made the plays he needed to make,” Petts said. “They were smart tactical fouls that might have saved us the game. Once we went down a man, we raised our game a little bit. We took it to ‘em even more, realizing that we had nothing to lose.”

Yeagley said the team’s response was excellent.

“These guys were like, ‘Yes, we’re going to get this win,’” Yeagley said. “It was wonderful.”

It was Penn State’s first home loss of the season and the Hoosiers’ first overtime win in Petts’ career.

“It’s really big,” Yeagley said. “They’re a good team. They came to life some more, and the game became a little bit of a track meet for most of the second half. I thought our guys dealt with it well.”

The win moved the Hoosiers into the lead in the Big Ten standings. Petts said it’s huge for IU to have won two road games against good teams.

Senior goalkeeper Luis Soffner moved to 4-0 in his career in regular season matches against the Nittany Lions.

“We always have good matches against them,” he said. “They kind of play just like us. I think it’s always a grind-it-out-type game. No team ever gives up. It’s always a back-and-forth-type game. No matter what their record is, we know that they’re a good squad.”

Redshirt freshman forward Kyle Sparks started his second match of the season Saturday, in place of freshman forward Andrew Oliver. Yeagley said he is still trying to figure out how to utilize his freshmen.

“I thought Kyle’s been training really well this week,” he said. “Sparks gave us energy, created a great breakaway that certainly he wanted to do better with. He continues to do well, and we’ll continue to use him in different varieties.”

Bradford earned his first yellow card of the season in the 89th minute, taking down Hasani Sinclair two yards outside the box on the right side.

Penn State committed a foul on the subsequent free kick, and IU escaped.

When Bradford received his second yellow 14 minutes later, Yeagley said earning a draw would have been a good result.

Instead, Petts delivered a dagger in the back of the net.

“(This was) a game we really needed,” Soffner said.

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