Pair of Upsets Highlight First Day of Mid-American Conference Men's Soccer Tournament

Updated 11/5/1999
DeKALB, IL (November 5) -- Two quick scoring flurries led to a pair of upsets in the quarterfinal round of the 1999 Best Western Mid-American Conference men's soccer championship tournament on Friday (Nov. 5).

Eighth-seeded Western Michigan scored twice in a 55-second span early in the second half to upset top seed Akron 2-1. The Zips grabbed a quick lead on Frank Ross' goal at the 4:04 mark, with the UA midfielder knocking a 17-yard blast off a WMU defender and past Eric Pogue for a 1-0 lead.

Chad Wiseman tallied the equalizer at 55:20, taking a Trevor Garrison feed for a six-yarder from the right side of the net. WMU sustained the pressure with Rob Friend stealing a pass to set up a 17-yard shot past Kyle Milligan for the eventual match-winner. Akron out-shot the Broncos 18-8 but Pogue registered eight saves for the victory. WMU advanced to the semifinals with a 2-14-3 ledger while Akron fell to 11-4-2.

Western Michigan will face the second-seeded University of Kentucky after the Wildcats defeated seventh-seeded Eastern Michigan 1-0. After a scoreless first half, UK hit the net just 2:23 into the second period for what proved to be the lone goal of the match. Rob Frey connected from five yards out, converting a Giovanni Fernandes pass to beat George Tomasso. Kentucky's defense smothered EMU, allowing just nine shots with Brian O'Leary needing to make only two saves. The Wildcats climbed to 11-6-1 on the season while Eastern Michigan dropped to 6-13-0.

WMU and UK meet in Sunday's (Nov. 7) first semifinal match, beginning at 11:30 a.m. at Huskie Soccer Field. The second semifinal features host Northern Illinois, which upset Bowling Green to earn a second-round berth versus Marshall.

The sixth-seeded Huskies broke free from a 1-1 halftime tie to defeat No. 3 seed BGSU 4-2. Alex D'Orsi tallied a goal and three assists to lift Northern Illinois to 11-8-0 on the season while Bowling Green saw its record dip to 8-10-1.

D'Orsi netted the tying goal at 14:33 and set up all three second-half tallies, including a pair of goals by Jason Ryder. The first of those came from 15 yards out at 48:41 to give NIU a 2-1 lead, only to be answered by Gene Braxton at the 69:08 mark. Ryder re-established the lead for Northern Illinois at 76:19, launching a 12-yarder just inside the far post to put NIU up 3-2. Robby Berkley added an insurance marker at 84:26, taking D'Orsi's lead pass and chipping a 12-yarder over goalkeeper Ty Fowler.

Bowling Green out-shot Northern Illinois 22-20 and owned a 13-1 margin in corner kicks but could not solve the Huskie defense with Rasih Pala making six saves.

NIU meets No. 4 seed Marshall after the Thundering Herd edged fifth seed Buffalo 2-1. Byron Carmichael put Marshall ahead at the 14-minute mark with a short tap after passes from Brent Sobczak and Ian Leggat. Marshall pushed the margin to 2-0 at 77:55 with Jeremy Albract launching a 12-yard shot from out front past Justin Deming.

That second goal proved vital at 83:25 when Chris Vinci's crossing pass found Perry Duronio in front of the net to put UB on the board. Buffalo could not net the equalizer, however, falling to 10-7-1 while Marshall improved its season record to 9-10-1.

Sunday's schedule has NIU and Marshall meeting at 1:30 p.m., with the two semifinal winners vying for the tourney title Nov. 14. The higher-seeded team remaining earns the right to host that contest.

1999 Mid-American Conference Championship Tournament
Hosted by Northern Illinois University
at DeKalb, IL
Huskie Soccer Complex

(No. 1 seed) Akron 1, (No. 8 seed) Western Michigan 2
(No. 2 seed) Kentucky 1, (No.7 seed) Eastern Michigan 0
(No. 6 seed) Northern Illinois 4, (No. 3 seed) Bowling Green 2
(No. 4 seed) Marshall 2, (No. 5 seed) Buffalo 1

FINAL SCORE: (No. 1 seed) AKRON 1, (No. 8 seed) WESTERN MICHIGAN 2

Score-by-Halves:        1st             2nd             Final
Western Michigan        0       -       2       -       2
Akron                   1       -       0       -       1

WMU is now 2-14-3 on the season                   
UA is now 11-4-2 on the season

Scoring Summary:
UA --- Frank Ross (unassisted), 17-yarder from center off defender,
4:04 Gone, 1st Half.
WMU --- Chad Wiseman (Trevor Garrison assist), six-yarder from right side off crossbar, 55:20 Gone, 2nd Half.
WMU -- Rob Friend (unassisted), 17-yarder from center off steal, 56:15 Gone, 2nd Half.


Score-by-Halves:        1st             2nd           Final
Eastern Michigan        0       -       0       -       0                       
Kentucky                0       -       1       -       1
EMU is now 6-13-0 on the season                       
UK is now 11-6-1 on the season

Scoring Summary:
UK -- Rob Frey (Giovanni Fernandes assist), five-yarder from left of
center, 47:23 Gone, 2nd Half.


Score-by-Halves:        1st             2nd             Final
Northern Illinois        1       -       3       -       4                       
Bowling Green            1       -       1       -       2

NIU is now 11-8-0 on the season                       
BGSU is now 8-10-1 on the season

Scoring Summary:
BGSU --- Chris Dore (Matt Lyons assist), seven-yarder from right of
center off 2-on-1 break, 12:09 Gone, 1st Half.
NIU --- Alex D'Orsi (Paal Bay Braathen assist), eight-yarder in
center off 2-on-1 break, 14:33 Gone, 1st Half.
NIU ---  Jason Ryder (Alex D'Orsi assist), 15-yarder from right side,
48:41 Gone, 2nd Half.
BGSU --- Gene Braxton (Ben Vaccaro assist), five-yarder from center
off cross, 69:08 Gone, 2nd Half.
NIU --- Jason Ryder (Alex D'Orsi assist), 12-yarder from right of
center off cross, 76:19 Gone, 2nd Half.
NIU --- Robby Berkley (Alex D'Orsi assist), 12-yard chip over
goalkeeper off 2-on-1 break, 84:26 Gone, 2nd Half

FINAL SCORE: (No. 4 seed) MARSHALL 2, (No. 5 seed) BUFFALO 1

Score-by-Halves:        1st             2nd             Final
Buffalo                  0       -       1       -       1                       
Marshall                 1       -       1       -       2

UB is now 10-7-1 on the season                       
MU is now 9-10-1 on the season

Scoring Summary:
MU --- Byron Carmichael (Brent Sobczak, Ian Leggat assists),
12-yarder from right side inside post, 12:00 Gone, 1st Half.
MU --- Jeremy Albracht (Unassisted), 12-yarder in center, 77:55 Gone,
2nd Half.
UB --- Perry Duronio (Chris Vinci assist), four-yarder from center
off cross, 83:25 Gone, 2nd Half.

Kentucky vs. Western Michigan, 11:30 a.m.
Marshall vs. Northern Illinois, 1:30 p.m.

Semifinal winners, at home of higher remaining seed, time to be announced.