Clemson Upsets #1-Ranked Maryland 2-1
Tigers Phanuel Kavita scores winning goal with 5:35 left in regulation.
CLEMSON, SC—Phanuel Kavita scored the winning goal with 5:35 left in regulation and teammate Brynjar Benediktsson scored one goal and had an assist as Clemson upset number-one ranked Maryland 2-1 in a men’s Atlantic Coast Conference soccer match at Clemson, SC Friday night.
With the win, Clemson improves to 6-8-1 overall, 3-4 in the ACC. Maryland falls to 13-2-2 overall, 4-2-1 in the ACC this season. The Terrapins are ranked number one by the NSCAA, Soccer America, and College Soccer News polls.
Clemson played a man down for 67:31 as starting defender Jack Metcalf received a red card in the 23rd minute.
Maryland scored first in the 36th minute. Taylor Kemp served the ball into the box from the center of the field. John Stertzer, with his back to the goal, flicked the ball in the goal from eight yards out for his 13th goal of the season.
Clemson evened the score early in the second half. Maryland’s Widner Saint Cyr fouled Benediktsson in the box and the Tigers were awarded a penalty kick. Benediktsson took the penalty kick for Clemson and he sent a low, hard shot in the left center as the Maryland goalkeeper Will Swaim dove to his left. It was Benediktsson’s seventh goal of the
“Our coaches believe in us and we’ve worked hard,” said Benediktsson. It’s a great feeling to score, but more importantly it’s better to get the win for the team. As a team we knew we could win this match tonight.”
The Tigers scored the winning goal at the 84:25 mark. Benediktsson, on a reset, sent a ball into the box. Keegan Priest, who is the Tigers’ lone senior, took a shot that was deflected. Phanuel Kavita knocked in the rebound for his first goal of the year.
“We started out well and we kept playing hard,” said Kavita. We worked hard, and we knew although we were down a man and down 1-0 that we were going to win. We played well and I am so happy for the team.
“Coach really believes in us,” said Keegan Priest who was appearing in his last home match as a Tiger. “This was a great win for the program. It was very special to me, as it was senior night. I am so happy for our team and the coaching staff.”
“We gave a great effort for the entire 90 minutes,” said Clemson Head Coach Mike Noonan. “This was a much-needed win for us. You never know what will happen at Historic Riggs Field. I am very proud of the team. We will enjoy this one tonight and start back to work tomorrow. It was about attitude and effort, today on this field, we were the better team.”
Over the years, Clemson has defeated eight number-one ranked teams. The Tigers are 4-4-1 when playing a number-one ranked team at Clemson.
Clemson 2, #1Maryland 1
Maryland--John Stertzer (Taylor Kemp) 35:16
Clemson—Brynjar Benediktsson (Penalty Kick) 50:16
Clemson—Phanuel Kavita (Keegan Priest, Brynjar Benediktsson) 84:25
Shots: Clemson 7, Maryland 12
Corner Kicks: Clemson 2, Maryland 3
Saves: Cody Mizell (CU) 6, Will Swaim (M) 3
Fouls: Clemson 9, Maryland 15