December 11, 1998
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Indiana was almost perfect, and Stanford was downright lucky. One will be the NCAA men's soccer champion.
Aleksey Korol and Nick Garcia scored 3:12 apart in the first half Friday and the Hoosiers dominated Santa Clara 4-0, while the Cardinal used a fluke goal in the 40th minute to end Maryland's championship dreams, 1-0.
The Hoosiers, seeking their fourth championship, and the Cardinal, seeking their first, will meet Sunday at University of Richmond Stadium.
The Cardinal (18-4-2) got the only goal of the game when Lee Morrison headed Jamie Clark's throw in from the left toward the goal.
Maryland defender Beckett Hollenbach headed it out, but right back to Morrison, who headed it back toward the goal. This time, the ball hit the post and fell into the net as Hollenbach was unable to block it.
"I saw it go off the post and I saw him (Hollenbach) try to clear it, but it had already bounced in the goal," Morrison said of his fifth goal of the season. "I looked at the ref to make sure he saw the same thing."
"He looped it and it was going over my head and I started backpedaling," Hollenbach said of Morrision's second header. "I turned and was going to try to head it, but the post was right there and it hit off the post and knocked off me and went in. There wasn't much I could really do."
Hollenbach and Maryland (16-8) appeared to tie it in the 56th minute when the defender's header went over the top of Cardinal goalkeeper Adam Zapala. But officials disallowed the potential tying score because they said Terrapins forward Pierre Venditti had fouled by charging Zapala.
"All I remember is going up for the header. I went up, the keeper went up and I don't remember fouling him. No," Venditti said of the call.
"I was celebrating (the goal). I thought it was in."
Maryland dominated the ball in the second half, and had other scoring chances, but Morrison made a diving stop on Keith Beach's shot from about 21 yards in the 66th minute and was a general nuisance to the Terrapins.
"They were definitely attacking in waves there at the end," said Clark. "It was definitely frightening. We had a lot of guys running at us."
Terrapins goalkeeper Christian Lewis also made a brilliant diving stop on a shot by Simon Elliott to keep Maryland close in the 77th minute.
The Cardinal, in their third year under coach Bobby Clark, will play for the national title after entering this tournament winless in five previous trips. They went 5-12-1 in 1995, and are 41-13-8 since under Clark.
The Hoosiers (22-2) had bid for a perfect season end in the semifinals here a year ago, but they dominated the Broncos (15-5-2) all day. Goalkeeper T.J. Hannig was never challenged and finished the match without a save.
"Most of us remember how we felt last year," said Lazo Alavanja, speaking of Indiana's 1-0, three-overtime loss to eventual champion UCLA in last year's semifinals. "We didn't want to go through that again."
Aleksey Korol and Nick Garcia scored 3:12 apart in the first half and Korol and Dema Kovalenko added second-half goals as Indiana became the first team since Portland in 1992 to score four against the Broncos.
"It's one of the best games we've played," said Hoosiers coach Jerry Yeagley, whose team will be making its ninth championship appearance.
"We were able to dictate the style of game and I felt that was going to be the crucial factor today. Everything was working."
Santa Clara hadn't reached the semifinals since it beat Indiana in 1991, and coach Mitch Murray said the Broncos were taken out of it early.
"They were very focused. They jumped on us early. I think they in many ways intimidated us a little bit and they never let up," Murray said.
"I was proud of our guys ... but today, we were outclassed."