LeSeth shot from a wide angle on the left wing sailed into the upper right corner of the goal to lift the Huskies to the win. NIU (8-2-0) was playing in its second-straight overtime game and its fourth in the last five matches.
LeSeth’s tally also helped the Huskies snap Marquette’s five-game unbeaten streak.
“I thought we came out in the second half and we were the aggressor,” NIU head coach Eric Luzzi said. “We had our foot on the pedal and we had them on their heels for stretches of the second half. Then it gets to the point, at 0-0 in overtime, where all bets are off and it just comes down to who is going to make one special play and Jayson hit a first-class shot, from a tough angle, outside the box and he bent it inside the far post.”
Marquette (4-5-2) held the better of the play in the opening 45 minutes, outshooting NIU 10-0. Junior goalkeeper Jordan Godsey made three saves in the first stanza to help keep the contest scoreless at the intermission.
“We were disappointed in the first half,” Luzzi said. “The first 30 minutes Marquette had us on our heels and our guys did not have a very good response. The last 10 or 15 minutes of the first half we started to turn the game a little bit but we were lucky to go into the half not down a goal.”
The Huskies wasted little time recording their first shot of the contest after halftime as senior Brad Horton had a pair of efforts blocked in the opening two minutes of the second half.
Those two shot attempts were a precursor of what was to come as NIU held a 9-6 advantage in shots in the second 45 minutes.
NIU had a pair of chances to win the game in the waning moments of regulation as sophomore Gael Rivera had a shot saved by Marquette goalkeeper David Check and freshman Isaac Kannah fired a shot wide left in the last two minutes before overtime.
Marquette had the only shot of the first 10 minutes of extra time as a Golden Eagle attempt by James “C.” Nortey less than two minutes into the extra period was blocked by the NIU defense.
The chances swung back to the Huskies in the second overtime session. Kannah had a shot saved in the 104th minute and sophomore James Stevenson took a shot that was blocked in the 105th minute before LeSeth netted the game-winner in the 107th, Horton picked up an assist on the LeSeth marker.
“We have learned throughout the season that sometimes you win a game playing soccer, sometimes you have to win with will, sometimes with luck,” Luzzi said. “I’m pleased that our guys have shown throughout the season that they can find different ways to win.”
NIU will return to action Saturday, Oct. 8, as the Huskies travel to meet unbeaten, defending national champion Akron. Game time is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CT.
For more information on NIU soccer and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.