December 6, 1998
CLEMSON, S.C. – Aleksey Korol scored a goal in each half, including the game winner to lead second-ranked Indiana to a 2-1 victory over number-one ranked Clemson at Riggs Field. The victory improved Indiana’s record to 21-2 and gives the Hoosier’s a berth in the Final Four for the 12th time in its history.
The game was played in front of 5,235 fans at Clemson’s Riggs Field, the second largest crowd in the history of the facility and largest since Clemson defeated San Diego State 2-0 on this same date in 1987.
Clemson completed its season with a 22-2 record. The loss on Sunday broke Clemson’s 17-game winning streak. The Tigers were hoping to advance to the Final Four for the first time since 1987, a season in which Clemson won the National Championship. It was the second straight year that Clemson reached the national quarterfinals. A year ago UCLA downed Clemson in the same round by the same score.
The game featured two of the top five winningest teams in NCAA Tournament history. The Hoosiers had a 71.2 winning percentage in NCAA play entering the contest, best in history of the sport, while Clemson’s 66 percent was fourth. This was the third NCAA Tournament meeting between the two teams. The Tigers had won the previous two meetings by 2-1 margins, including Clemson’s 2-1 victory in the 1984 NCAA Championship game at the Kingdome in Seattle.
Korol opened the scoring at the 18:46 mark of the first half. Clemson defender Mike Potempa attempted to clear the ball to teammate Nathan Rawlins, but the ball was intercepted by Indiana’s Ryan Mack. Mack then passed to Gino DiGuardi who fed Korol for the shot. His attempt from the right, beat Clemson goal keeper Josh Campbell at the far side.
It was the first goal allowed by Clemson and goal keeper Josh Campbell in 590 minutes and 42 seconds dating to a October 28th score by Elon. The Hoosier goal also put Clemson behind in a game for the first time since the September 27 game against NC State.
The Tigers came right back just 10:18 later when Wojtek Krakowiak scored his 31st goal of the season. Matt Elliott fed John Wilson, who passed to Krakowiak on the left side. The senior scored on the short side past Indiana keeper T.J. Hanning. It was Clemson’s first shot of the game.
Campbell and Hanning entered the contest as the top two goal keepers in the nation in terms of goals against average, but both yielded goals in the first half.
Indiana wasted little time breaking the 1-1 halftime score and it was Korol again scoring. He registered his team best 14th goal of the season at the 47:08 mark on a double assist from Lazo Alavanja and Dema Kovalenko. Korol was patient with the ball on the right side, then beat Campbell low to the far post.
Clemson now trailed in the second half for the first time since its only loss of the season, a 2-0 defeat at Duke. The Tigers had just three shots on goal and three corner kicks for the first 70 minutes of the match, then put on relentless pressure the final 20 minutes. Clemson had seven shots and four corner kicks during the period and three times had opportunities to tie the contest.
With just 14 minutes left Clemson’s Bob Cavanagh hit the crossbar from 10 feet in front, then Krakowiak was blocked by Hannig on the rebound. With 11:51 left Krakowiak’s shot from the left side hit the post. Cavanagh had a final opportunity with 4:30 remaining from point blank range, but his shot was saved by Hannig. The Indiana keeper make all three of his saves in the final 20 minutes of the game.
Indiana Coach Jerry Yeagley “I was pleased with our overall performance. You have to give Clemson credit, they had an outstanding season. You have to be good to win here (at Clemson). We were 42-8 at home in NCAA games, but just 1-8 on the road in our history.
“It is unfortunate that we had to play in this early round. We have been ranked one-two all year in the polls. We really should have met next week in the Final Four.
“This is the finest victory I can remember at Indiana. I couldn’t be more proud of our players. Our team is resilent. We knew getting up early was important. With our team speed, we could counter attack and get that early goal in both halves.
Clemson Head Coach Trevor Adair “First, I would like to congratulate Indiana, they are a well coached team. They took us out of our gameplan. These were the best two teams in the country. It is unfortunate that we had to meet in the quarterfinals.
“I am very proud of our players. Our seniors, Jeff Bilyk and John Wilson gave it their all. I am especially disappointed for them.
“Indiana usually plays three in the back, but today they played four. With their team speed and athleticism we couldn’t get the ball around them in the back. They were well organized offensively and defensively.
“They were definitely more aggressive, but soccer is a game of inches. We hit the crossbar and the post once each in the last 20 minutes, then hit the keeper square in the chest. That is what separates the good from the better teams. We will be back next year.”
Scoring SummaryIndiana–Korol (DiGuardi), 18:46Clemson–Krakowiak (Elliott and Wilson), 29:04Indiana–Korol (Alavanja and Kovalenko), 47:08
Saves: Campbell (CU) 2, Hannig (IU) 3 Shot: Indiana 10, Clemson 8 Cornerkicks: Indiana 11, Clemson 6 Fouls: Indiana 21, Clemson 11 Offsides: Indiana 2, Clemson 1
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