Men's Soccer Falls in NCAA PK Heartbreaker

Men's Soccer Falls in NCAA PK Heartbreaker

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WHEATON, Ill. -- Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology battled No. 13 ranked Wisconsin-Whitewater to a scoreless draw in round one of the NCAA Division III men's soccer tournament, before the nationally ranked Warhawks advanced with a penalty kick victory on Saturday night.

Wisconsin-Whitewater narrowly won the five-round penalty kick shootout 4-3.  Chris Lucatorto came off the bench to force two Rose-Hulman misses in penalty kicks, while Carter Wright recorded one save on a potential game winning kick to keep the match alive.

Rose-Hulman ends the season with one of the nation's longest streaks of matches without a loss.  The Fightin' Engineers earned a win or draw in their last 15 matches, dating back to a one-goal loss on September 16.

Wisconsin-Whitewater outshot Rose-Hulman 32-14 overall and 12-5 on net, but the Fightin' Engineers had the best chance for a goal during the 110-minute battle.  Sophomore Turner Perkins rocketed a 98th minute blast from just beyond the top of the box that was narrowly tipped aside by Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Wright played brilliantly in goal to keep the Fightin' Engineers in the match with 12 saves, including at least four quality stops on potential scoring chances for Wisconsin-Whitewater. 

Offensively, junior Ben Lyon and senior Dieter Schultz paced Rose-Hulman with four shots each. Perkins had two shots for the Engineers.

Defensively, Rose-Hulman recorded its 11th shutout of the season.  In the shootout, Davis Ferriell, Austin Webb and Steven Peterson made the first three attempts for Rose-Hulman before Lucatorto prevented the final two shots from getting by.

Rose-Hulman has battled its last two nationally ranked NCAA Tournament opponents to penalty kicks before falling by 4-3 margins.  The Fightin' Engineers played to a scoreless draw at No. 4 Calvin last year, before falling to No. 13 Wisconsin-Whitewater this season.  In the 2013 sweet sixteen tournament run, Rose-Hulman won its first game on penalty kicks at Penn State-Behrend.

The Fightin' Engineers completed the season with a 13-2-6 record and its third consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance.  Rose-Hulman men's soccer has now qualified for four NCAA Tournaments in the last five years and five NCAAs in the eight-year head coaching era of Sean Helliwell.