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NCAA Dec 11, 2022

Syracuse and Indiana facing off Monday in Men’s College Cup Final

CARY, N.C. – Syracuse men’s soccer will play for a NCAA National Championship for the first time in school history, taking on No. 13 seed Indiana in the College Cup Final on Monday, Dec. 12 in Cary, N.C. at WakeMed Soccer Park. (NCAA Bracket)

The Hoosiers have advanced to the title match for the 17th time in a program history, and the second time in three seasons. With a win, Indiana would become the only program to win a national title in each of the last five decades.

Monday’s College Cup Final is scheduled for a 6 p.m. kick off and fans can watch every second of the national championship match on ESPNU.

See below for more on each team:

Syracuse Orange

Syracuse enters the national championship match with a 18-2-4 record, breaking a 40-year old program single-season wins record. The Orange look to win the first national title in program history. The 2022 team’s +30-goal difference is the best in Ian McIntyre’s tenure. Syracuse also looks to become just the second team in ACC history to win its division, conference tournament, and national championship in a single-season. North Carolina was the first in 2011.

The College Cup Semifinal was an enthralling scoring showcase, as an 86th minute goal from Levonte Johnson lifted Syracuse past Creighton in a 3-2 win. Curt Calov found defender Christian Curti in the 37th minute, as Curti’s first goal of the season came at a perfect time. Creighton pulled level in the 50th minute with a Duncan McGuire goal. Nathan Opoku pushed ‘Cuse in front again just a minute later before Creighton responded with a 64th minute equalizer. Johnson sent Syracuse to the national championship match in the 86th minute, as Opoku was credited with the assist. Syracuse finished with a season-high seven saves, as Russell Shealy stopped six shots, tying a season-high.

Syracuse’s first pair of All-Americans since 1932, Johnson and Opoku have brought the Orange to a new level of success with their exciting attacking play. The forward duo has combined for 21 goals, 13 assists and 55 points. They are the highest scoring Syracuse attacking duo since Ryan Raposo and Massimo Ferrin scored a combined 60 points. Johnson and Opoku are the first two players to hit double-digit goals in a season in McIntyre’s tenure.

Indiana Hoosiers

Indiana is 14-4-6 on the season and the No. 13 seed in the NCAA Championship. The Hoosiers advance to the national championship game for a second time in the last three years, losing to Marshall in the 2020-21 College Cup Final. Indiana is led by 12th-year head coach Todd Yeagley. The former four-time All-American student-athlete has a 164-56-41 at his alma mater.

The Hoosiers blanked Pittsburgh 2-0 in the College Cup Semifinal. Ryan Wittenbrink opened the scoring in the 14th minute, while Tommy Mihalic added a second goal right before the first half ended. Indiana beat No. 20 seed St. Louis, Marshall, and No. 12 UNC-Greensboro in the leadup to the 2022 College Cup.

Wittenbrink, a first-team All-Big Ten selection, leads Indiana in goals (10), assists (9) and points (29). The Hoosiers have not allowed a goal in the NCAA Tournament. Indiana has won eight national championships, the last coming in 2012.

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