WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senior Matt Butera (Westfield, Mass.) scored his fourth goal of the season in the early stages of the second half to lift the Connecticut College men's soccer team to a 2-1 comeback victory over Catholic in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday afternoon.
Catholic (18-3-1) only needed until the fifth minute to strike first, as Ben Alexander volleyed in a pass sent into the box by Philip Meszaros. The Camels, however, battled back in front of a home Cardinal crowd and eventually netted the equalizer shortly before the break. Junior Ben Ludwick (Boxborough, Mass.) evened the score in the 39th minute by taking a long pass outside and firing a left-footed shot that bounced off the right post and into the back of the net.
After going into the break deadlocked at 1-1, the visitors completed the rally in the 51st minute when Butera took a free kick from just outside the box on the left side. The senior bent the ball over a wall of four Cardinals and into the top left corner of the net for the marker that would hold up and prove to be the difference.
Junior goalkeeper AJ Marcucci (West Chester, Pa.) made three saves to pick up the victory between the posts for Connecticut College, while Jack Long of Catholic turned away four shots in the tightly-contested match which saw the Cardinals hold a 12-11 edge in shots and attempt five of the eight corner kicks.
Connecticut College (11-3-3) will continue its third straight postseason appearance in the NCAA Tournament when it faces No. 3 Johns Hopkins for a second round matchup on Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m.