Whatever Clemson Men’s Soccer head coach Mike Noonan does to prepare his team for the postseason, it works.
On Wednesday evening in Winston-Salem, a Clemson team that had been humbled by Wake Forest 6-1 on September 24th played an almost impeccable match in the semifinals of the ACC Tournament in earning their second upset in four days as they defeated the Demon Deacons on their home turf by a 2-0 score.
The Tigers (13-5-1) controlled the match from the outset against the 20th-ranked Deacons (14-5-0) and got goals from the same two players as they did in that 2-0 win.
Similar to Sunday, Brandon Parrish got the Tigers on the board first, taking a pass from Ousmane Sylla outside the box and blasting a long-distance shot from right to left past the Wake goalkeeper for a 1-0 Clemson lead 13:09 into the game.
That was the halftime score as Clemson completely shut down the Deacons offense and held the fourth seeded club to 0 shots on goal in the first 45 minutes.
There was no letting down for the Tigers in the second half as a corner kick from Isaiah Reed eventually found Derek Waleffe who fired a shot that glanced off a defender and into the net at the 59:39 mark for the final margin of 2-0.
The defense of Clemson Men’s Soccer stifled Wake Forest to the tune of 0 shots on goal for the match
Clemson played sparkling defense the rest of the night as Wake Forest finished with 0 shots on goal and Clemson goalkeeper Joseph Andema recorded his eighth shutout of the season.
It was the Tigers fifth straight win and Clemson became the lowest seed to ever reach an ACC Tournament Final in soccer.
Next up for Clemson is a rematch with Syracuse for the ACC Championship on Sunday at noon at WakeMed Park in Cary, North Carolina. The match will be televised by ESPNU.
Syracuse and Clemson met on September 19th in Clemson, with the Orange coming out on top 2-1 in the Tigers first loss of the season.