After beating Maryland 2–1 and Marquette 1–0, the University of Wisconsin men’s soccer team (5–4–1, 2–1 Big Ten) faced a grueling road test against No. 5 and previously undefeated Michigan State (8–1–2, 2–1 Big Ten). The Badgers stunned the Spartans in overtime through a 96th-minute golden goal from sophomore Alex Alfaro, handing them their first loss of the season.

“Huge win against an extremely talented Michigan State team,” Badger Head Coach John Trask said in a conversation with UW Athletics post-match. “They are very well coached. It was a battle.”

The first half saw the Badgers struggle to get anything going, managing only one shot. On the other side, the Spartans managed to get off five shots in the half, including two quality chances from their leading goal scorers Ryan Sierakowski and DeJuan Jones. However, they were denied by goalie Dean Cowdroy, who ended the match with five saves and his fifth shutout of the season.

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The second half saw the Badgers manage three more shots compared to two by the Spartans, but either side failed to break through, forcing the game into overtime after 90 minutes of play.

In the 6 minute mark of overtime, the Badgers played the ball towards the penalty area of Michigan State. After several deflections and failed clearances from Michigan State, Alfaro took the ball from the edge of the box and struck it with his right foot, sailing it past Spartans goalkeeper Jimmy Hague into the left corner of the goal for his first goal of the season and the winner.

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“We figured we were going to have to score on that type of play,” Trask said. “Fair dues on the goal, and props to Isaac and Alex for keeping it alive. Great goal by Alfaro—what a timely goal for his first one of the season.”

Up next, the Badgers will host a trio of games, including local derbies with Milwaukee (6–3–1, 2–0–1 Horizon) and Green Bay (5–4–1, 2–2–0 Horizon) on Oct. 3 and 10, respectively, with a Big Ten game against Rutgers (2–6–1, 1–3–0 Big Ten) sandwiched in between on Oct. 7.