The No. 18-ranked West Virginia University men’s soccer team fell, 3-2, at Penn State on Friday night at Jeffrey Field.
The Mountaineers (1-2) led twice in the match but couldn’t finish off the Nittany Lions (1-1-1), who notched the final two goals of the evening.
WVU opened the scoring in the 19th minute with a goal by senior midfielder Luke McCormick. After junior midfielder Ryan Crooks sent a ball into the box, sophomore midfielder Max Tretheway, who made his first career start on Friday, headed it right to McCormick. That’s when the Derby, England, native flicked it in from in front of the goal to give the Mountaineers a 1-0 lead.
The tally was McCormick’s first of the fall and seventh of his career.
Just before the halftime whistle, Penn State equalized with a header goal in the 44th minute to make it a 1-1 contest as the two clubs returned to the locker room.
West Virginia’s second lead of the night came courtesy of redshirt senior defender Dyon Dromers’ first goal of the season. McCormick ignited the scoring chance with a hard shot off the crossbar, which deflected right to Dromers for the finish.
However, WVU conceded back-to-back goals to end the game. First, the Nittany Lions tied the match at 2 with a goal off a Mountaineer giveaway in the defensive third in the 76th minute. From there, PSU took the lead with an 81st-minute penalty kick.
Down to 10 men, West Virginia franticly looked for a late goal, but to no avail. WVU outshot Penn State, 12-8, in the setback, while both teams finished with four shots on goal.
Dromers led the way with three shots, while freshman forward Marcus Caldeira, Crooks and McCormick all finished with two.
With the loss, WVU dropped to 9-21-2 against Penn State in 32 all-time meetings. It was just the Mountaineers’ second loss in the last eight contests with the Nittany Lions, dating back to 2006.
Next up, West Virginia returns home to begin a three-match homestand, beginning on Tuesday, Sept. 6, against American on Military and Service Member Appreciation Night at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium in Morgantown. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET.