For the first 100 minutes of No. 7 IU men’s soccer’s game against No. 11 Michigan on Saturday, it looked like neither team would break the scoreless tie no matter how many chances their offenses got.
Then IU men’s soccer’s sophomore forward Ryan Wittenbrink took the ball around two Michigan defenders, beat Michigan’s goalkeeper and, 35 seconds into double overtime, gave IU a 1-0 victory.
The game was scoreless through the first overtime thanks to high level defense and great goalkeeping from both teams’ sophomore goalkeepers. IU’s Roman Celentano saved six shots, while Michigan’s Owen Finnerty made two saves.
The game looked eerily similar to 2019’s Big Ten Championship game, when IU beat Michigan in penalty kicks after both teams were held scoreless through the end of the second overtime.
The Wolverines controlled the majority of possession for the first half, but IU used strong defense to keep the game scoreless. The Hoosiers had no shots through 45 minutes but had kept the Wolverines from creating chances. Michigan had three shots, two of which were shots on goal that Celentano saved.
Two other chances Michigan created in the first half were blown offside.
Shortly after halftime, senior defender Spencer Glass left the field in the 48th minute after injuring his lower leg on a challenge and didn’t return.
Glass was carted off the field with an inflatable cast on his leg and didn't put any pressure on it when he was helped to the cart.
After Glass left, IU ramped up its offensive pressure and outshot Michigan 4-3 in the second half.
The Hoosiers got their best chance to score in regulation on their first shot, when a give-and-go set sophomore forward Herbert Endely up to cross the ball into the box. The cross found sophomore striker Victor Bezerra, whose shot from ten yards out was saved by Finnerty.
By the end of the first overtime period, both teams were consistently threatening with scoring opportunities. Although Michigan outshot IU 4-0, both teams created attacking opportunities before the period ended scoreless.
Instead, it was Wittenbrink shortly off the restart in the second overtime making a play to win the game.
The Hoosiers’ fifth straight victory, won in golden goal fashion, kept them on the top of the Big Ten standings.
IU will play its final home game of the regular season on April 4, when Maryland comes to Bloomington.