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MSOC: Pack Edged 2-1 by No. 2 Notre Dame

Posted October 21, 2013

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NC State men’s soccer became only the third team this season to take a lead against No. 2 Notre Dame, but eventually fell 2-1 on Saturday night at Dail Soccer Stadium.

The Wolfpack (4-4-4, 1-4-3 ACC) fought early to craft a 1-0 lead in the 20th minute on Danny DiPrima’s first goal of the season. Alex Martinez took credit for the assist, after navigating down the left side of the Irish (8-0-5, 5-0-3) defense before sending a cross to DiPrima to touch home from in front of the right post.

State controlled the rest of the half to take a 1-0 lead into the locker room, joining North Carolina as the only two teams to lead Notre Dame at intermission this year.

“I thought we played well,” said NC State head coach Kelly Findley. “We went into the half ahead 1-0, and even in the second half I thought we had good moments. We gave up one chance really, and they had a guy get around and score a good goal on the near post. It’s disappointing to go up early and not be able to maintain that lead.”

The Irish roared back in the second half, finding the equalizer in the 54th minute on Patrick Hodan’s fourth goal of the year, assisted by Connor Klekota. Notre Dame added to that lead in the 65th minute on Max Lachowecki’s strike from the left side from Hodan and Harrison Shipp.

The Pack faced a 2-1 deficit for the final 25 minutes, and came up with several opportunities to knot the score. Michael Bajza targeted Nick Surkamp on the through pass in the 77th minute before Surkamp was nudged off course. Two minutes later, Surkamp manufactured a loose ball in front of the net on his deep throw-in, but the Wolfpack was whistled for a foul to end the threat.

State poured on the pressure again in the closing minutes. Martinez fired shots on goal in back-to-back possessions during the 85th minute. A flurry of action closed the game as the Pack rallied to produce a throw-in and a corner in the final seconds .

NC State returns to action on Tuesday, October 22 to host Liberty at 7 p.m. Streaming coverage will be provided by GoPack All-Access. Fans can also follow along with live stats on GoPack.com, or on Twitter via @PackMensSoccer.

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