As the Monon Bell rolled past in the back of a pickup truck, DePauw senior forward Julian Gonzalez finessed the ball into the side of the net. The goal pushed the Tigers past Centre College in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
DePauw University men’s soccer beat Centre 3-2 Saturday and advanced to a home match against The University of Redlands on Sunday that ended in a 2-1 loss for the Tigers.
Centre was not a new foe to DePauw, who fell to them during a 3-2 overtime loss earlier in the season.
The Tigers struck first with a goal from junior midfielder Taras Tataryn. The goal came off an assist from Gonzalez that left Tataryn with shot on goal from the top of the box. It was his first goal of the season.
Despite scoring first, the Tigers weren’t able to take the lead into halftime. Centre scored two goals within six minutes. The goal that gave them the lead came off a penalty kick in the 36th minute.
The second half was dominated by DePauw, who tied the game in the 76th minute with a goal from senior forward Zach Hoffman. Hoffman buried the ball in the back of the net off a cross from Gonzalez.
Gonzalez, who set the school record for goals, scored the game-winner in the 75th minute, finessing the ball into the side netting off an assist by Tatryn.
"It was really special to have a goal in this atmosphere and with everything going on," said Gonzalez in a post-match press conference. "It feels great to have finally gotten the goal to seal that one, and honestly, it's one I'll never forget."
With the win, the Tigers advanced to the round of 32 where they played The University of Redlands, on Sunday. Redlands advanced to the match with a 2-2 win over Washington University in St. Louis in penalty kicks Saturday.
The first half was split for both teams as neither were able to score or had many goal-scoring chances.
The Tigers would break the deadlock just two minutes into the second half with a goal from Hoffman. Senior midfielder EJ Moore’s pass allowed Hoffman to fire off a shot from the top of the box.
Redlands knotted the score up at 1-1 in the 58th with a goal from the top of the box. Play got a bit chippy following the goal, with a player from each team earning a yellow card during the second half. Redlands found the game winner in the 75th minute of a deflected free kick.
The loss ended the Tiger’s season and Redlands advances to play no. 1 ranked University of Chicago on Saturday.
“This is the most resilient team I've ever worked with,” said DePauw Head Coach Brad Hauter. “No matter the obstacle, no matter the challenge they'd find a way. We just fell a game short.”
The Tigers end the season with a 12-6-2 record. Senior forward Julian Gonzalez led the team in goals and assists with 17 and seven respectively.