HUDSON, NH (11-2) Jake Rhodes knocked in the winning goal as UC Santa Cruz outlasted Pine Manor for a 2-1 overtime win in the ACAA Men's Soccer Semifinal.
Second-seeded UCSC (8-7-3) will face top-seed Wisconsin-Whitewater in the ACAA title game Sunday morning.
Both teams attacked well in the first half, but each defense was equally up to the task.
UCSC finally got on the board inside the first ten minutes of the second half, when defender Will Barba got on the end of a Keith McCarty corner kick for a 1-0 lead. The Gators, however, answered 3:28 later on Andree Hernandez-Garcia's goal to tie it. The back-and-forth game had plenty of chances, but neither school could capitalize before the final horn as the match went into overtime.
The swiftness continued in the first overtime. Banana Slug captain James Allison almost ended it 2:03 in after racing upfield, but his shot was cleared off the line. That set up Rhodes's heroics as he connected with fellow freshmen Christian Locatelli and Barba just over two minutes later to provide the Golden Goal and send UCSC to the final.
Santa Cruz finished with a 20-10 shot advantage in their first game in New England since 1995.