RACINE, Wis. - Fort Hays State men's soccer, the No. 6 seed in Super Region 3 of the NCAA Tournament, knocked off No.3 seed and 20th-ranked Wisconsin-Parkside on Sunday by a score of 2-1.
Blake Arndt scored a goal in both halves to boost the Tigers to victory. The Rangers end their year at 15-4-2 overall, while the Tigers at 14-5-2 advance to the Round of 16 to take on No. 2 seed Lake Erie College.
The Rangers took control early with a goal in the 11th minute, but the Tigers would respond with a strike of their own with five minutes left in the half. Blake Arndt received a perfect pass over the top of the defense from Viktor Robertsson and struck it past the keeper to get the match equalized by halftime.
Arndt would find the net again midway through the second half when Taisei Arima threaded a pass through several defenders for Arndt to beat the keeper 1-on-1 and give the Tigers the lead. The Tiger defense held off a few late offensive opportunities from the Rangers to secure the win. Both teams shot 13 times and the Tigers put six on target compared to three by the Rangers. Kieran Brown added another two saves to his total.
This was Fort Hays State's first-ever win in a true road match in the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers knocked Northeastern State out of the tournament in Tahlequah in 2014 in a 1-1 tie that the Tigers advanced on penalty kicks. That was the last time the Tigers advanced past a true road match.
With the win, Fort Hays State is now 5-6-3 all-time in the NCAA Tournament. This was the first tournament win for FHSU since 2018, when a 2-0 victory over Ohio Valley in Hays sent the Tigers to the national semifinals. Since that win, the Tigers played to a scoreless draw in that national semifinal match of 2018, but were elminated on penalty kicks, and then fell in the opening round of the 2019 NCAA Tournament to Indianapolis.
Location and times for the Third Round and Quarterfinal matches of the NCAA Tournament will be announced soon. Top-seeded University of Indianapolis advanced to the Round of 16, so they will likely be hosting the Third Round and Quarterfinal matches as the Super Region's No. 1 seed. Information on the Third Round and National Quarterfinals, held Dec. 2-5, will be released once available.