CARY, N.C. – After trailing 1-0 with just over five minutes left in regulation, the Brevard College men’s soccer team (12-5-3) pulled off a comeback for the ages, as junior midfielder Igor da Silva scored in the 85th minute to force overtime. Following a scoreless first overtime period, junior forward and program-leading goal scorer Ryan Lynch gave Brevard its first lead in the 109th minute to lift BC to the school’s first USA South Conference Tournament title – as the Tornados defeated two-seed William Peace University (10-4-4) 2-1 to earn the program’s first-ever berth to the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Brevard, who will advance to the College’s first NCAA Tournament of the DIII-era and just its second NCAA Tournament berth in any sport (2010 Men’s Basketball, NCAA DII Tournament), will now await its first-round draw which will be announced in the NCAA Division III Men’s Soccer Tournament Selection Show on Monday, November 7 at 1:30 p.m. on NCAA.com.
BC’s postseason run, which required the Tornados to play three matches over the course of five days and last through over 330 minutes of soccer, began at home last Tuesday when Brevard and Greensboro drew scoreless through regulation and overtime before the Tornados advanced 4-3 on a penalty kick shootout. Brevard then traveled to Rocky Mount, North Carolina to take on top-seeded NC Wesleyan University, as the two sides finished regulation tied 1-1 ahead of da Silva’s 109th-minute game-winner in double-overtime that sent the Tornados to the championship match.
The improbable run concluded on Saturday when Brevard fell behind 1-0 in the 11th minute as William Peace’s Josh Rutland connected on TJ Hurd’s assist on a throw-in from the near sideline. Both sides went scoreless through the remainder of the first half as the hosts took the one-goal advantage into the halftime intermission.
Following 40 more scoreless minutes of action, Brevard was finally able to break through in the 85th minute when da Silva collected a loose ball and found the back of the net which would lead to extra time being needed to decide a champion. After a scoreless first ten minutes of overtime, BC’s Lynch scored what would become the game-winning goal with less than two minutes remaining in the second overtime.
Statistically, Brevard outshot William Peace by a 17-14 margin while also holding a 6-5 edge with shots-on-target. Lynch was BC’s leading shooting threat with five shot attempts and his lone on-target effort resting in the back of the net. Marcos Silva attempted three shots, while da Silva and Rodrigo Garcia took two efforts.
BC freshman goalkeeper Matheus Rossi (12-5-2) and Brevard’s smothering defense that included a starting back line of Rocco Barbon, Tom Dussauge, Sam O’Callaghan, and Brady Tesch, kept the Tornados within a goal throughout regulation as Rossi made four saves in the contest – including a pivotal stop in the first overtime period.
The Tornados and Pacers matched each other with four saves each, as WPU’s Tripp Kidd was saddled with the loss after allowing a pair of goals in the final 25 minutes of play. The hosts were able to hold the advantage in corner kicks, 6-2.
Both sides took a shot attempt each before William Peace’s goal in the 11th minute gave the Pacers the early one-goal lead. Brevard searched for the equalizer for the remainder of the first half, putting three shots on target while one other attempt hit the left post. However, the Pacers escaped with a 1-0 lead as halftime approached.
The Tornados and Pacers took a combined 13 shot attempts in the second half (BC 7-6), as the visitors searched for an equalizing goal while the hosts attempted to double their lead. With just five minutes left to play, Brevard’s da Silva collected a loose ball and ripped a right-footed shot into the back of the net from distance, tying the match in dramatic fashion. Lynch took an 86th-minute shot attempt that was wide, as the championship match shifted to overtime.
Each side took one shot each in the first overtime period, with Rossi making a stellar save in the 98th minute to keep the match level. Lynch and Joao de Souza attempted shots in the first four minutes of the second overtime before Lynch found the game-winner in the 109th minute. A loose ball was cleared by WPU, but the clearance fell right to the feet of Lynch, who took a touch and ripped a right-footed screamer into the nylon, giving the Tornados a double-overtime championship victory.
Brevard, who is in the midst of the most historic season in the program’s NCAA-era history, will continue its run in the 2022 NCAA DIII Men’s Soccer Tournament. BC has won its most single-season matches (12) in the NCAA era this year, while Lynch broke program records for single-season (14) and career (21) goals and points (33 this season, 49 career). O’Callaghan broke the single-season (eight) and career (15) NCAA-era records for assists, as Head Coach Helio “L” D’Anna’s squad captured the program’s first conference title, and its second trophy in three seasons (Spring 2021 USA South West Division Championship).
The Tornados placed a conference-high six student-athletes onto the 2022 USA South Conference All-Tournament Team, including da Silva – who was honored as the Tournament Most Valuable Player.
2022 All-Tournament Team
F – Jorge Lemus, William Peace
F – Ryan Lynch, Brevard
F – Josh Rutland, William Peace
MF – Danny Alvarez, William Peace
MF – Igor da Silva, Brevard (MVP)
MF – Rodrigo Garcia, Brevard
MF – TJ Hurd, William Peace
D – Rocco Barbon, Brevard
D – Rush Campbell, William Peace
D – Tom Dussauge, Brevard
GK – Matheus Rossi, Brevard
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