Men’s soccer national final between No. 3 Syracuse and No. 13 Indiana
The GIST: While the men’s World Cup won’t be decided until next Sunday, the men’s College Cup will turn on a confetti shower in just a handful of hours. Even though the fellas brought bedlam and upsets to the pitch all season, tonight’s 6 p.m. ET final on ESPNU features two seeded squads: No. 3 Syracuse and No. 13 Indiana.
The newbies: For the first time in program history, the Syracuse Orange will kick it in the NCAA tourney final. The ACC champs scored almost three times as many goals as their opponents this season, earning the ’Cuse a No. 3 seeding. But their road to Cary, NC, has been tight, with the Orange winning each game by just one goal.
- Friday’s semi against the unseeded Creighton Blue Jays was a back-and-forth battle, but Syracuse secured their 3–2 victory with striker Levonte Johnson sliding in the 86-minute game-winner.
- To take tonight’s trophy, Syracuse will need the dynamic duo of Johnson and fellow star striker Nathan Opoku to continue to make magic inside the box.
The dynasty: Unlike the Orange, No. 13 Indiana find themselves in familiar territory, seeking their ninth title. Fun fact: The Hoosiers knocked out St. Louis in the first round of the tourney, the only other school with more ’ships in its harbor at 10.
- Indiana held unseeded Pitt scoreless on Friday, ending the Panthers’ Cinderella run with a 2–0 W after scoring twice in the first half. Notably, the Hoosiers and goalie JT Harms haven’t conceded a goal all tournament.
- The Hoosiers must rely on their locked-in defense against the explosive Orange offense to hoist some hardware tonight. You can do this, you badass hunky dudes.