NOTRE DAME, Ind. – No. 8 Notre Dame (3-2-1, 1-0-0 ACC) suffered a late 1-0 defeat at the hands of No. 4 Michigan State (6-0-2) on Monday evening at Alumni Stadium. The visitors scored in the 89th minute to escape with the victory.
Despite the loss, the Irish outshot the Spartans 11-6, including a 6-3 advantage in shots on goal.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Notre Dame and Michigan State battled to a scoreless standstill in the opening 45 minutes. The Irish had the better of the chances in the first frame, as senior Felicien Dumas rocketed a shot just over the bar in the 10th minute followed by a header at the far post by senior Patrick Berneski off a free kick that went wide in the 16th minute.
The Irish appeared to be on the front foot for the majority of the second half but could not find the breakthrough goal. Senior Sean MacLeod unleashed a shot from distance in the 65th minute, forcing the Spartan goalkeeper to make a diving save. The Irish then earned three corners between the 81st and 84th minute but were unable capitalize.
With less than two minutes remaining, Michigan State’s Farai Mutatu cut into the box from the left flank and hit a right-footed shot inside the far post to deliver the Spartans the victory.
STAT OF THE MATCH
The Irish held the opposition scoreless in the first half for the sixth consecutive game. Notre Dame hasn’t allowed a goal in the opening 45 minutes this season.
HEAD COACH CHAD RILEY’S TAKE
On the team’s performance…
“There are some things we could have done better in the attack but I think if we just keep creating those chances then they will start going in. Right now we need to double down on who we are and continue to create those quality chances.
On the team’s mentality coming into the match…
“These guys are really mentally tough. They have played the No. 1 strength of schedule pretty much the entire time they have been here. Against Indiana we felt a little unfortunate not to come away with a result so I know they were excited for tonight’s game. I think we were unlucky to not have scored in the first half. With that said, I give a lot of credit to Michigan State. They are a really good team and I know they are ranked in the top five right now. They made it difficult but I am proud of the way we competed and played without getting the result we wanted.
NOTES OF THE MATCH
- Notre Dame is now 2-2-0 against ranked opponents during the 2018 season.
- The Irish outshot the Spartans 11-6 on the evening.
The Irish face their third opponent ranked in the top five of the United Soccer Coaches rankings of the season on Friday evening, as they host No. 3 North Carolina at Alumni Stadium at 7 p.m. The match will be streamed live on ACC Network Extra via the WatchESPN app.