Syracuse’s season ends with national semifinal loss to Clemson in penalty kicks

first_img Related Stories Syracuse squanders opportunities in Final 4 loss to Clemson Published on December 11, 2015 at 8:53 pm Contact Jon: [email protected] | @jmettus KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Clemson’s T.J. Casner’s shot bulged in the back of the net and the Tigers’ players stormed onto the field. Four penalty kicks and four goals for Clemson left Syracuse midfielder Chris Nanco at midfield with his shirt pulled over his head. Oskar Sewerin, the last kicker for the Orange, put his hands on his hips and remained motionless as he watched Clemson celebrate.Syracuse wasn’t supposed to be here.The Orange lost nearly 70 percent of it scoring from last season, a Hermann Trophy finalist in goalie Alex Bono and its entire back line. It started two freshmen on the defense and one in net each game and was winless against ranked teams during the regular season.Finally, on Friday, the No. 6 seed Orange overstayed its welcome, losing to No. 2 seed Clemson, 0-0, but 4-1 in penalty kicks, in the Final Four.The Tigers will advance to the NCAA title game on Sunday at 1 p.m. against the winner of No. 8 Stanford and No. 4 Akron while SU’s season is now over.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse and Clemson split the first two meetings between the teams. The Tigers beat the Orange at home, 1-0, on Oct. 17 with a last-minute goal off a turnover. SU took down Clemson, 2-0, on Nov. 11 on the road to advance to the ACC title game.In the first half on Friday, Syracuse let up just one shot — a blocked-shot rebound attempt from Clemson’s Michael Melvin that SU goalie Hendrik Hilpert had to dive to stop. The Orange, meanwhile, had mustered four.In the second half, Syracuse piled on the shots, finishing 90 minutes with a 12-3 shot advantage, but with nothing to show for it.In the final minutes of regulation, Ben Polk found the ball on his foot inside the box one-on-one with Clemson goalie Andrew Tarbell. But Polk blasted the shot directly into Tarbell’s body and the game went to overtime.In the second of two 10-minute overtime periods, SU forward Chris Nanco got his chance — a through ball from midfielder Oyvind Alseth that Nanco hit into the chest of a charging Tarbell.Despite an overwhelming number of chances, Syracuse’s dream season ended in penalty kicks. Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more