Tyler's Strike Leads Lions Past West Virginia, 2-1
Sept. 25, 2013
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State men's soccer earned its first road victory in thrilling fashion as Jordan Tyler's (Rochester, Mich.) 71st-minute header helped defeat West Virginia, 2-1, on Wednesday night at Dick Dlesk Stadium. Shane Campbell (York, Pa.) scored his first career goal in the first half as Penn State won its first match over West Virginia since 1990.
"I was really pleased tonight with a lot of things," head coach Bob Warming. "Coming right back and responding with two great chances after they scored and getting the tying goal. I'm so pleased for Shane and Jordan who got goals from great assists from Kyle and Connor. They have all four been knocking on the door this fall and it was great to see them get the joy of scoring."
Penn State's usually staunch defense had a lapse early in the game as a turnover led to a West Virginia goal. Majed Osman collected the turnover, played it over to Andy Bevin whose effort found Craig Stephens about 16 yards from net. Stephens' shot deflected off a PSU defender and past goalkeeper Andrew Wolverton (Atlanta, Ga.) in the fifth minute.
The WVU goal snapped Penn State's 275-minute shutout streak and prevented the Lions from earning their first road shutout. Nevertheless, the Nittany Lions were not to be deterred as they controlled possession for much of the opening act of the match.
PSU finally broke through on a 12th-minute tally from Campbell. Randy Falk (Tewksbury Township, N.J.) made a run down the right wing and played a cross into the WVU defense, which was poorly cleared. Connor Maloney (Harrisburg, Pa.) picked up the scraps about 35 yards from net and tossed a perfect ball over the top to a running left-winged Campbell. The sophomore slotted home his first career goal into the right-side netting to even the score in the 12th minute.
The first half played very even for both sides. West Virginia had a 28th-minute chance from Bevin saved by Wolverton, while PSU had a couple of positive runs toward goal, but no further shots on net. Almost every statistical category was even: shots (4-4), shots on goal (2-2), fouls (4-4), offsides (2-2), saves (1-1). The only margin, statistically anyway, was a 3-0 corner kick edge for Penn State.
Penn State nearly went ahead early in the second half as a free kick from 40 yards out was quickly taken by Grant Warming (Omaha, Neb.) to a running Martin Seiler (Stuttgart, Germany).Seiler nearly got past the Mountaineer defense, but his shot from 16 yards was deflected wide for a corner kick.
"Mason Klerks and Grant were terrific in center midfield and were true two-way players tonight," Warming added. "The guys knew we were awfully banged up when we went to New York and New Jersey (on the last road trip). Tonight we were fresh and great at a touch place to play on the road. I couldn't be prouder."
West Virginia regained control in the 63rd minute with a couple efforts on Wolverton's net. Zak Leedom's 10-yard attempt went just wide before he fired another right-winged curling shot was easily saved by Wolverton.
In the 71st minute, Penn State turned the tide as Warming played a great ball across the face of goal to a streaking Tyler. The redshirt-junior made no mistake by heading the ball home to give Penn State its first lead of the night. For Warming, the helper was just his second collegiate point following an assist recorded in a win over Stetson last year.
The 73rd minute required a moment of brilliance by Wolverton to stop WVU's equalizing attempt. Jamie Merriam found himself alone in front of frame, but his low shot was knocked away by a diving Wolverton (four saves). Ultimately, the Mountaineers' offense couldn't mount a sufficient attack to force overtime.
WVU had the statistical edge in the second half with a 7-4 advantage in shots, ultimately holding an 11-8 margin for the match. Shots on goal were 5-4 in favor of WVU and corners ended tied at four.
Penn State improved to 20-6-2 all-time against West Virginia in the series that dates back to the 1960s. The victory was PSU's first since 1990 and the match was Penn State's first visit to Morgantown since 1989. The Mountaineers were 2-0-1 in the three meetings since 1990.
Penn State returns to Jeffrey Field to open Big Ten play on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. vs. Wisconsin. The match is the second half of a soccer doubleheader as the Penn State women host Indiana at Noon.