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Monday, June 17
The Indiana Daily Student

sports

Hoosiers win showdown

Noonan scores two goals, one assist to lead IU past No. 8 Penn State

The men's soccer game Friday night against Penn State was hyped as a clashing of the Titans on two levels. \nFirst was the meeting of two nationally ranked conference powerhouses. Second was the meeting of two of the country's National Player of the Year candidates -- IU junior Pat Noonan and Penn State senior Ricardo Villar. Each battle lived up to its hype, as two goals and an assist for Noonan pushed the No. 6 Hoosiers past the No. 8 Nittany Lions, 3-1.The win gave IU head coach Jerry Yeagley No. 499 of his career.\nAfter a very physical start and a several near goals for the Hoosier offense, Penn State drew first blood at the 33:45 mark. A Villar pass found the head of freshman midfielder Gabe Bernstein and shot into the goal to give Penn State the early 1-0 lead. Less than a minute later, IU responded. Freshman J.D. Johnston served a corner-kick to Noonan on the near side. The ball skipped off Noonan's head to senior Ryan Hammer who redirected the ball into the back of the net, tying the game going into halftime. \n"I think the biggest thing is after they scored their goal, we didn't put our heads down," Hammer said. "So I think it was real key that we kept fighting and getting that goal. It was a 0-0 game going back into the locker room."\nThough the score was tied, Yeagley was not concerned at halftime.\n"I told the guys at halftime this is 1-1 and this is a heck of a game," Yeagley said. "I said I'm enjoying this, and I hope you are. I thought that was our best first-half performance of the year, and I wasn't looking at the score, I was looking at the way we were playing." \nA revitalized IU team took the field in the second half. Just 46 seconds into the half, freshman Danny O'Rourke found a streaking Noonan on the left side of midfield. Noonan dribbled behind the Penn State defenders, finding himself in a one-on-one fast break with Penn State goalie, Eric Earnhardt. When Earnhardt came out of the goal to cut off Noonan's angle, Noonan took a shot well to the right of Earnhardt, and seemingly to the right of the goal post. The ball bounced once and quickly cut directions into the right side of the net, giving IU what would end up being the winning goal. \n"I saw (Earnhardt) was leaning towards the near post," Noonan said of his shot. "As far out as I was, I thought I could bend it around him on the wet ground." Noonan built upon the lead when he sent a direct kick from 30 yards out past the arms of Earnhardt, giving him his fifth point of the match. \n"I think our offense is really starting to click," Hammer said. "Guys are starting to gel as a team,we have good chemistry, and everyone is just going out there having fun. We are playing with pride and it's starting to show." \nFollowing Villar's assist in the first half, he had a hard time breaking through the IU defense, managing only one shot the entire match.\nSenior goalkeeper Colin Rogers, who posted three saves in the evening, credits his defensive unit for limiting Penn State to one goal. \n"Hammer, (junior John Swann), (senior Josh Rife), and the others did an unbelievable job against some unbelievable players," Rogers said. "Anytime you have two All-Americans attacking the goal it's going to take the best effort from the whole defense to shut them down, and we did a great job of that. The guys really picked me up tonight"

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