IU men's soccer battles back twice, beats No. 10 Wake Forest for spot in NCAA Sweet 16

Indianapolis Star

advanced to the NCAA round of 16 on Sunday night, thanks to an extra-time victory away to national-seed Wake Forest in a five-goal thriller.

Hugo Bacharach’s brace moved the Hoosiers (14-4-4) past Wake Forest in a game that saw Indiana equalize not once but twice, before the second of Bacharach’s goals proved the decider in an eventful second-round NCAA tournament meeting between two of college soccer’s most-successful programs.

The hosts, this year’s No. 10 overall seed, took the lead twice Sunday night, first through a deflected Jahlane Forbes goal in the 21st minute and then through a Vlad Walent 67th-minute penalty. Each time, Indiana found an answer.

The Hoosiers’ first came via Bacharach’s towering header, the midfielder rising to meet a Patrick McDonald corner and redirect it past Wake Forest goalkeeper Trace Alphin.

Karsen Henderlong fired home a second equalizer in the 73rd minute after the Demon Deacons failed to clear a goalmouth scramble. Wake Forest defenders called for offside but Henderlong was well on, his goal prompting extra time.

Enter Bacharach, a defender-turned-midfielder who does his best work at the other end of the pitch most of the time but has been amongst the goals lately for the Hoosiers. His pair Sunday makes four in six games — the balance of his account this season — the last perhaps the pick of the bunch.

IU won a free kick in Wake Forest’s half, McDonald driving an outswinging ball into the area. It swerved just behind Bacharach who, back to goal, threw a leg at the ball to deflect it goal-ward. Alphin couldn’t move quickly enough to his left, and Bacharach’s brace confirmed a victory and a place in the third round of the tournament for the double Big Ten champions.

Follow IndyStar reporter Zach Osterman on Twitter: @ZachOsterman.