Georgetown and senior goalkeeper Joe Devine had been there before. In their first conference game of the year, the Hoyas went into overtime tied at zero with then-No. 4 Connecticut.

But Saturday, in their Big East regular season finale against No. 9 Notre Dame, as the Hoyas headed into overtime in a scoreless tie, something felt different.

Devine, who had been blitzed by the UConn attack that outshot Georgetown 16-1 and scored the game winner seven minutes into the first overtime, was not under pressure in the extra periods against Notre Dame. Although the match ended in a 0-0 tie, the Hoyas dominated overtime, taking eight shots to the Fighting Irish’s two. Seven of Georgetown’s shots came in the second 10 minute overtime, in which senior goalkeeper Chris Cahill was forced to make two saves.

“There was one team really trying to win the game going into overtime, and it was us,” Georgetown Head Coach Brian Wiese said. “To be able to do that against a team of Notre Dame’s caliber is encouraging for our guys.”

It was the first tie of the season for Georgetown (7-10-1, 5-5-1 Big East), which finished the regular season on a four-game unbeaten streak in the Big East and in fifth place in the Blue Division. The tie was nothing new to Notre Dame, which concludes the regular season with a 10-3-5 (7-0-4) record. Despite the Irish’s undefeated record in the Big East, the tie Saturday allowed UConn to steal first place from Notre Dame.

With the No. 5 seed in the Blue Division, Georgetown will play at South Florida, the fourth seed out of the Red Division, in the first round of the Big East tournament. The Bulls, who had been in the top 25 since the Sept. 11 poll until a loss at Syracuse dropped them from the most recent rankings, are 11-4-2 overall with a 6-4-1 mark in conference. Had Georgetown earned a victory over Notre Dame, it would have secured the fourth seed in the Blue Division and played host to Cincinnati (8-9-1, 5-5-1) in the first round of the tournament.

The Irish dominated the first half of play, taking 11 shots and holding the Hoyas’ offense without a shot. Devine made two saves in the first half, and Georgetown’s defense cleared all of Notre Dame’s seven first-half corner kicks.

With postseason seeding on the line, emotions ran high for both sides, as they combined for 13 fouls in the first half. Georgetown’s sophomore defender Mark Zeman put several Notre Dame players on the ground with strong challenges, and junior midfielder Sean Bellomy was booked in the 36th minute for dissent.

“We had trouble getting the ball down [the field] and playing our game in the first half,” senior forward Mike Glaccum said.

The Hoyas could not get much going offensively in the second half, but their defense held the Irish to three shots. In the 56th minute, freshman midfielder Seth C’deBaca took Georgetown’s first shot of the game, but could not put his attempt on goal. Although they had several chances inside the Irish box, the Hoyas did not take another shot for the rest of regulation.

“At the end of regulation going into overtime, we said that a tie does nothing for us, so you might as well lose trying to win or win,” Wiese said.

Georgetown took one shot in the first overtime period, and heading into the second overtime, Wiese brought in offensive-minded freshman defender Ibu Otegbeye for Zeman, and had his defenders and midfielders push forward. The offense that had taken two shots through the first 100 minutes of play was suddenly creating chance after chance. The Hoyas earned three corners and took seven shots, and their best chance came in the 104th when freshman forward Chandler Diggs broke loose. Diggs dribbled into the box on the right side, but Cahill came off of his line and smothered the shot.

“Our problem for the entire year has been putting the ball in the back of the net, and it got us again,” Glaccum said.

Notre Dame did not possess the ball much in the overtime but had several scoring chances on counter attacks. With less than 10 seconds remaining, senior forward Joseph Lapira, the 2006 college player of the year, found himself unmarked in Georgetown’s box, but sent his shot wide. The shot was the Irish’s best chance since the first half.

“We seemed to run out of gas,” Notre Dame Head Coach Bobby Clark said. “I’d like to say that [we didn’t have many chances in the second half because] we didn’t get in until one o’clock, but I don’t think that was it because we opened the game with good energy.”

The match carried extra meaning for several Hoyas. Devine, Glaccum and senior defender Richard Diaz were honored as they played their final home game on the Hilltop. Also, Wiese and Clark said they had mixed feelings about coaching against each other after Wiese coached under Clark for 10 years at Stanford and Notre Dame.

As the Hoyas prepare for the 7:30 p.m. kickoff this Wednesday in Tampa, Fla., Georgetown will have to find a way to put the ball in the back of the net if they want to be more than one and done.

“We can beat any team in the country,” Devine said. “We’re not just happy to be [in the Big East tournament]; we want to take home the title.”

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