Junior defender A.J. Palazzolo tore down the field in the 13th minute, looking to put No. 8 IU men’s soccer up early. As he prepared to launch the ball in the back of the net, he was shoved from behind and tumbled to the ground.
The early red card as a result of the play was the beginning of the chaos and physical play Sunday at Jeffrey Field. From jersey pulls to takeout slides, yellow cards and fouls piled up during this heated conference matchup.
After the Nittany Lions went down a man, the rain began to pour, and its defense collapsed. IU scored three goals in the span of eight minutes in the first half to get its third consecutive victory.
Penn State’s football team may have dominated Purdue on Saturday, but its soccer squad’s defensive woes could not give fans a nice ending to Homecoming weekend. The Hoosiers spoiled the Nittany Lions' end to the weekend with a 3-1 victory.
Taking full advantage of Penn State being down a man, the Hoosiers attacked the Nittany Lions' defense and found themselves close to the goal box in the 16th minute.
In his debut start with IU, senior midfielder Joris Ahlinvi crept past the Penn State defense and knocked in a header goal off a cross from senior defender Simon Waever.
Minutes later, freshman midfielder Aidan Morris launched a left cross from 25 yards out off a restart and found Palazzolo for a header goal. This was Palazzolo’s first goal of the year and Morris’ second assist.
Then, in the 24th minute, Morris maneuvered the ball around the right corner of the goal box and tapped the ball to junior midfielder Spencer Glass. Glass blasted the ball from roughly 10 yards out and scored his first goal of 2019.
IU kept pushing the ball deep into Penn State’s territory throughout the remainder of the first half. Freshman goalkeeper Roman Celentano had nothing to block and no threats to face as the Hoosiers primarily played on the Nittany Lions’ side of the field.
A Penn State goal early in the second half from senior midfielder Aaron Molloy threatened to put Penn State back in business. Despite a more aggressive onslaught on both ends of the field from Penn State, the Hoosiers kept the Nittany Lions from climbing back into the game.
Freshman defender Danie Munie and sophomore defender Jack Maher cleared the ball when the Nittany Lions threatened a three on two and shut down potential opportunities near the box off corner kicks. Celentano also slapped away three shots on goal in IU’s defensive efforts.
The closing 20 minutes were the most physical as IU and Penn State combined for three yellow cards and eight fouls. Both head coaches were screaming at the officials and each other as the physicality increased.
Morris was yanked by his jersey and thrown to the ground. IU senior defender Jordan Kleyn also picked up a yellow card for taking out a Penn State forward.
In the midst of the fighting and the pouring rain, IU held its ground and finished with its fifth consecutive win over Penn State.
This victory moves IU to 7-1-2 on the season and 22-0-8 in conference play since 2015.
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