Cal Jennings did it again.
The Knights all-everything senior captain scored a golden goal mere seconds into overtime to give the UCF Knights Men’s Soccer team a 2-1 victory over previously unbeaten Missouri State at the UCF Track & Soccer Complex in the Round of 32 of the NCAA Tournament.
Here’s the big moment, with our very own Eric Lopez on the call:
CAL JENNINGS— NCAA Soccer (@NCAASoccer) November 25, 2019
A golden moment for No. 9 UCF!!#NCAASoccer | @UCF_MSoccer pic.twitter.com/xFAyRdWTMM
It marks the first time UCF Men’s Soccer has reached the Sweet Sixteen in nine all-time NCAA appearances.
Missouri State, who came in at 18-0-1 on the year and ranked 12th in the nation, took a 1-0 lead, but the Knights got a header from Yoni Sorkin to equalize in the first half:
KNIGHTS FIGHT BACK— NCAA Soccer (@NCAASoccer) November 24, 2019
No. 9 UCF ties it at 1 against Missouri State!#NCAASoccer | @UCF_MSoccer pic.twitter.com/kssimORLaU
Jennings’ goal came off a cross from Gino Vivi, who also helped on Sorokin’s tally. Jennings and head coach Scott Calabrese discussed the game-winner after the match:
The walks us through the game winning goal ⚔ #ChargeOn pic.twitter.com/vvhghf3yjF— UCF Men's Soccer (@UCF_MSoccer) November 25, 2019
The Knights move on to face their old rivals, the SMU Mustangs, who defeated them in the American Athletic Conference Championship in Orlando just last week, 1-0. SMU defeated Coastal Carolina on a golden goal themselves by their scoring star, Garret McLaughlin, to move on:
GARRETT MCLAUGHLIN GAMEWINNER!— NCAA Soccer (@NCAASoccer) November 25, 2019
The golden goal gives No. 8 SMU the 1-0 win over Coastal Carolina as well as a spot in the Round of 16.#NCAASoccer | @smusoccerm pic.twitter.com/kLgg6IM6rD
This will be the seventh time UCF and SMU have hooked up in the last three seasons, with three of those match-ups coming in The American Championship. UCF has won only once, with three of those games going to extra time.
Earlier in the regular season, UCF played SMU to a 3-3 draw. The Round of 16 game will take place in Dallas (SMU is the 8-seed overall while UCF is the 9) on either November 30th or December 1st, as the schedule for the next round is still pending.