Garnet Advance to NCAA Sweet 16 With Thrilling 2-1 (20T) Victory Against Hobart
SWARTHMORE, Pa. – Swarthmore junior Philippe Celestin scored the game-winning goal - his first goal of the season - in the 107th minute of play to give the Garnet a 2-1 (2OT) victory over Hobart in an exhilarating second round NCAA Division III men's soccer game from Clothier Field Stadium on the campus of Swarthmore College on Sunday evening.
With the victory, the Garnet (16-2-2) advance to the Sweet 16 for the second consecutive season to face Transylvania next weekend at a site to be determined.
The wild, physical game which saw eight cards, 33 fouls, three ejections and 10-on-nine soccer for the final 54 minutes of play appeared to be heading to penalty kicks until substitute Celestin made a break for the goal from 30 yards out as the seconds ticked down. He drove nearly untouched up the middle of the field, blasting a shot from 15 yards out past the Hobart goalkeeper, sending the pro-Swarthmore crowd of nearly 500 into a frenzy and the Garnet to the Sweet 16.
"It meant a lot to score that goal," said Celestin. "Last year , I didn't even get to suit up because I broke my hand and I missed yesterday's game because I was directing a musical piece that I composed on campus, so it was really special to score that goal in front of our home fans."
The Garnet would not have even been in position to win the game if it wasn't for the late game heroics of junior Morgan Langley. Down 1-0 with just five minutes remaining but still with a man advantage, Langley - who had to sit out the Garnet's previous game - scored his team-leading 14th goal of the season from 16-yards out on the left wing on a shot that boomeranged into the bottom left post, trying the game 1-1 and sending the contest into overtime.
"I'm still in a little bit of disbelief that we were able to pull that off," said head coach Eric Wagner. "There were a lot of difficulties that we had to fight through, but we fought through them."
The Garnet needed to rally for the win after digging themselves into an early hole, as Hobart midfielder
Chris King blasted a shot from 20-yards out at the top of the box in the 19th minute, drilling a Swarthmore defender, causing the ball to change directions just enough to get past Garnet goalkeeper Zach Weimar, giving the Statesmen the 1-0 lead.
In the 32nd minute, tempers first began to flare in the very physical match when Hobart's Matt Geswell picked up a red card – giving the Garnet a 11-10 advantage - while Swarthmore senior Dylan Langley picked up his first of his the two yellow cards for the game.
Then in the second half, the physical play once again took a turn for the worse, as in the 58th minute, the second yellow cards on Hobart's Tommy Hayes and Swarthmore's Dylan Langley led to their exits from the game, giving the Garnet a 10-on-nine advantage for the remainder of the game.
From there, the Garnet controlled possession and tempo – outshooting the Statesmen 23-3 from the second-half on – to earn the thrilling victory.
In goal for the Garnet, Weimar made two saves, while Hobart goalkeeper Charlie Hale made nine saves in defeat.
The Garnet finished with a staggering 17-3 edge in corner kicks and 30-12 advantage in shots.