Judges advance to Elite Eight, 3-1, on PKs after 1-1 draw with Amherst

AMHERST, Mass. (some information taken from an Amherst College release)– Brandeis junior Ben Woodhouse (Suffield, Conn./Suffield) made a career-high 10 saves in regulation to preserve a 1-1 draw, then stopped three of host Amherst College's four penalty kicks as the Judges advanced, 3-1 on penalties, to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Tournament this afternoon. The Judges will meet Rutgers-Newark tomorrow at 1 p.m. for the right to return to the Final Four for the first time since 1984.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • Brandeis struck first in the 18th minute, as sophomore back Stephen DePietto (Westbury, N.Y./Berkshire School) crossed to senior forward Evan Jastremski (Marshfield, Mass./Marshfield) streaking down the middle of the field. Jastremski one-touched the ball into space and blasted it past Amherst keeper Lee Owen for his fifth goal of the season.
  • Amherst equalized in the 56th minute, when sophomore Fikayo Ajayi notched his third of the season on an assist from senior Christopher Martin.
  • With time winding down, sophomore Andrew Allen (Norfolk, Mass./King Phillip Regional) had Brandeis' final scoring opportunity of regulation, juking a defender near the top of the box with 2:49 to play and launching a hard shot towards net, but the attempt went wide right.
  • The hosts had the best opportunity of the overtime periods, when junior Adrian Bellew drove a shot towards net that rang off the right post with 6:30 left in the second session.

HOW IT HAPPENED – PENALTY KICKS

  • Brandeis made three of their four attempts, with seniors taking each.
  • Woodhouse opened with a save, and Mike Lynch (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) scored to give Brandeis a 1-0 lead.
  • In the second round, Josh Berg (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) and the Purple and White's Jackson Lehnhart each connected, making it 2-1 Brandeis.
  • Woodhouse stoned AC's Weller Hlinomaz in the third round, but the Judges were unable to capitalize.
  • In the fourth, Woodhouse made another spectacular save, and this time Zach Vieira (Andover, Mass./Brooks School), who scored an overtime game-winner earlier in this postseason, converted again to send the Judges to the Elite Eight.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

  • Amherst outshot Brandeis, 20-12, with the big differences coming the second half (9-5) and first OT session (4-0).
  • Woodhouse made six of his career-best 10 saves in the second half and two more in the first OT.
  • Owen had three stops in net for AC.

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE

  • The Judges eliminated Amherst on PKs for the second time in three years, having done so in the 2014 Sweet 16 as well.
  • It marks the second-straight year that the Judges defeated the defending on their home field. Brandeis toppled then-top-ranked and defending champs Tufts last season, with Vieira also providing the decisive goal in that 1-0 decision.
  • Brandeis is one step away from the Final Four for the first time since 1984. The Judges are hoping to make it to Salem, Virginia, in the 40th anniversary of their only national championship in 1976.
  • Jastremski's goal was the 14th of his career – and third in the postseason.
  • Vieira decided Brandeis's NCAA tournament opener as well, scoring the golden goal against Western New England in the first round.