COLUMBUS, Ohio – Thursday night's Ohio Athletic Conference Men's Soccer semi-final matchup between second-seeded Capital University and third-seeded John Carroll University had a wave of thrills go through Bernlohr Stadium, especially at the match's conclusion. The Blue Streaks found a way to respond to Capital tying the match twice and delivered a crushing 3-2 defeat, thus ending the Crusaders' season.
Three second-half goals, two of which came in the final seven minutes, kept tensions high and the lead in limbo before John Carroll (14-4-1) wound up with the victory. Despite the Blue Streaks holding much of the control in the first half, it produced a 1-1 draw that was taken into halftime. Possession leveled as Capital upped its shot count from four to seven shots in the second half, while the Crusaders halved the number of attempts by the Blue Streaks after they posted 10 in the opening 45. John Carroll, however, connected on one more of its attempts than did Capital.
With John Carroll leading 2-1 heading into the final 10 minutes, Capital ramped up its tempo. After entering the Blue Streaks side of the field inside the 83rd minute, Jacob Pulliam (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville North) and Cheyn Roux (Davidson, N.C.) each rocketed shots that we blocked down before reaching the JCU cage. Not but seconds following that sequence, senior Mario Suarez (Strongsville, Ohio) also had a shot blocked down, but junior A.G. Basiakos (Hilliard, Ohio/Hilliard Bradley) cleaned up the rebound and put the shot inside the near-side post to tie the game up, 2-2.
The Blue Streaks retaliated with what would become the game-winning goal when Tristan Lyles threw the ball back into play from the near-side of the field, finding newly inserted Dalton Browsky on the far post. Browsky headed it in with 5:27 left on the clock to help JCU retake the lead.
Capital mounted one last chance with its fourth and final corner kick, but to no avail.
Basiakos scored both of Capital's goals, marking his first multi-goal game of this career. His first score came short of the end of the first half when in the 44th minute when he and Pulliam connected on a beautifully placed free kick that Basiakos headed in. That tied the game, 1-1.
The Crusaders' season comes to a close with an overall record of 9-9-1. John Carroll advances to the OAC Tournament championship match to take on top-seeded Ohio Northern University this Saturday.