Fordham Claims Men's Soccer Championship Following Shootout Victory
DAVIDSON, N.C.—Second-seeded Fordham won the 2016 Atlantic 10 Men's Soccer Championship, its second title in the last three years, in a thrilling 3-2 shootout over No. 5 VCU Sunday afternoon at Davidson College's Alumni Stadium.
Fordham (10-6-4) earns the Atlantic 10's automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. The NCAA selection show will be 1:00 pm ET Monday on NCAA.com
The teams battled to a scoreless draw through 90 minutes of regulation and 20 overtime minutes before the match went to a penalty kick shootout. Both goalkeepers, Rashid Nuhu for Fordham and VCU's Pierre Gardan, were named to the All-Championship team after stellar play in net to preserve the tie through overtime. Each keeper had a diving save to preserve his team's shutout. Nuhu made 11 saves for the championship and stopped three VCU shots in the shootout to earn the championship's Most Outstanding Player honors. He faced 11 shots and made two saves while Gardan saw 10 Fordham shots, also making two saves.
Fordham scored its first two goals of the shootout behind Janos Loebe and Joergen Oland after VCU's Steve Dal Molin opened the penalty kick phase with a goal. Nuhu then came up big stopping the next two VCU shots and Fordham led 2-1. Greg Boehme tied it for VCU with a shot to the bottom left, but the ensuing Fordham attempt from Matthew Lewis went in on the bottom right. Nuhu then came up with a title-clinching save to end the shootout with Fordham up 3-2.
Loebe, his brother Jannik Loebe, Eric Ohlendorf and Cole Stevenson joined Nuhu as Fordham's representatives on the All-Championship Team. Jorge Herranz, Luc Fatton, Dakota Barnathan, Brandon Eaton and Gardan were named to the All-Championship team from VCU. Rhode Island's Ryan Bailey also earned a spot on the team.
Both teams had outstanding chances in the box. Fordham tallied seven corner kicks off its offense in addition to its 10 shots. VCU (8-9-4) had its 11 shots and four corner kicks. The physical game results in 12 fouls and three yellow cards for each team.