Survive and advance, that's the mode the Syracuse Soccer team is now in. It's Tourney Time in the ACC and the #2 seeded Orange continue to roll on. Rather than survive, the team dominated the Duke Blue Devils en route to a 2-0 victory that could have been a much wider margin if not for some solid keeping and the need to be a touch more clinical in front of goal.
The Orange were almost in for a scare when Brody Huitema redirected a lobbed pass toward goal, only to come up close off the woodwork. From that point on, Syracuse took control and never looked back. There were a few chances for Duke off of counters and a small control of possession in the second half, but for the most part, the Orange foot on the gas never let up.
Alex Halis, usually a spark off the bench this year, took advantage of the start and opened the Orange account with a very nice finish of a Julian Buescher cross for his second of the year. The strike was a quality volley right into the top netting. Halis had the crowd on his feet only around five minutes later when he took a header off the crossbar.
Syracuse continued to control possession through the midfield and the back four continued to be solid. Bono recorded 7 saves, matching his season best and recorded another clean sheet, giving him the single season record, and moving him one away from the career clean sheet record. It's been a great campaign for the back four and it's still continuing.
The second goal was a thing of beauty as well. Oyvind Alseth beat his man on the right side of the pitch and whipped in a cross to Liam Callahan on the far post. He volleyed back in front of goal to Nick Perea, flashing into the box who slotted it above Wilson Fisher for the goal.
Emil Ekblom and Chris Nanco gave a spark to the Orange and had some looks on target, with Nanco going through an evasive little stretch in the first half that made the man look like Eden Hazard on this side of the pond. Unfortunately it didn't pay off and Fisher brought the shot in. Ekblom had a few looks including a nice one on one that he couldn't get his boot around on and pushed wide. Both were making solid runs throughout their time on the pitch.
Overall a good game for the Orange, and now they move on to the next one, which would happen to be a rematch against one of two teams to beat them this year in Louisville. Syracuse lost on the road in overtime to the Cardinals and look to avenge that on neutral ground in the Semifinals. That game is at 8pm, Friday and you can catch it on ESPN3 if you're interested.