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Oct. 23, 2005

Box Score

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – For the first time in 21 trips into Indiana’s Armstrong Stadium, the Ohio State men’s soccer team kept the Hoosiers from gaining a victory over the Buckeyes as the two teams battled to a 2-2 tie in double-overtime. Sixth-ranked Indiana (9-1-5, 2-1-3 Big Ten), the two-time defending national champion, was out-shot for the first time this season as Ohio State (8-6-2, 1-2-1 Big Ten) overcame a 2-0 deficit.

Ohio State out-shot the Hoosiers 14-12 and got a second half goal from Reid Traeger, then a Hoosier own-goal following a free kick by Xavier Balc, and the Buckeye defense kept Indiana out of the net the rest of the way.

“We’re pleased with the tie, but the story of the game is the fact we were able to come back from two goals down at Indiana,” John Bluem, Ohio State head coach, said. “Our kids came out in the second half ready for the challenge and wanted to prove that they were better than that. It was a very courageous effort by our guys.”

Ohio State entered the game 0-20-0 all-time at Armstrong Stadium and was playing an Indiana team which had allowed only eight goals all season. In addition, the Hoosiers lead the Big Ten in scoring with 36 goals, but were unable to score after the 23rd minute.

Traeger (Sr., Littleton, Colo./Heritage), who had a shot blocked early in the second half, made good on his second attempt on a header in the 60th minute for his second goal of the season. The scoring play began when OSU senior Kevin Nugent (Centerville, Ohio/Centerville) was fouled and Balc (So., Hudson, Ohio/Hudson) took the free kick from 35 yards out. Balc, who registered his fourth assist of the season on the play, sent his free kick toward the Hoosier goal, with Traeger’s diving header sending the ball past IU goalkeeper Chris Munroe.

It marked just the sixth goal allowed by Munroe this season. Indiana entered the game averaging only three shots on goal allowed per game, but the Buckeyes had reached that total with 25 minutes left in the game.

Balc was then responsible for the next Ohio State goal, though officially it went as an Indiana own-goal. After a Hoosier foul, Balc blasted a free kick from 40 yards out that glanced off a Hoosier defender and into the back of the net at the 83:37-mark.

In the first half, the Hoosiers broke down the Buckeye defense early through prolonged possession for their first goal 7:43 into the match. Jordan Chirico took the ball down the left flank and sent a cross to the right six of the penalty area for Brian Plotkin. He headed the ball to the left corner of the six-yard box that Jacob Peterson headed in to put the Hoosier up, 1-0.

Indiana then got its second goal on a corner kick in the 23rd minute when Plotkin send a lofted ball to the back of the six-yard box that Jed Zaynar headed in just inside the left upright for his first collegiate goal.

Ohio State had its first shot 13 minutes into the match when Nugent sent a header wide left following a cross from freshman Geoff Marsh (North Olmstead, Ohio/North Olmsted). Indiana was called for 13 fouls in the first half, but a big no-call came in the 38th minute when Marsh led a three-on-two break with Nugent and Balc toward the Hoosier goal but was taken down a step outside the 18-yard box.

Indiana posted just a 5-4 shot advantage over Ohio State in the first half but led by two goals at halftime. Balc had two of the Buckeyes’ shots, while Nugent and junior Brent Rohrer (Springfield, Ohio/Catholic) had one each.

OSU senior goalkeeper Ray Burse Jr. (Prospect, Ky./St. Xavier) went horizontal to save a shot by IU’s Brian Plotkin at the 27:40 mark. Burse then had three saves after halftime to preserve the tie.

The Buckeyes were without two of their starting midfielders Sunday, including junior Taylor Korpieski (Westerville, Ohio/Thomas Worthington) and junior Rob Strachan (Hudson, Ohio/Hudson).

Ohio State has two games remaining on its regular season schedule. Both are at home and include Northwestern, Oct. 28, and Michigan, Nov. 4. The Northwestern game Friday begins at 7:30 p.m.