Black Leopards 1-1 Bidvest Wits (2-3 pen): Students advance to Nedbank Cup quarterfinal
Black Leopards v Bidvest Wits February 2019
Backpagepix
Leopards missed three of their five spot-kicks, while the Students scored three and missed two to secure their passage into the next round

Bidvest Wits secured their place in the quarterfinals of the 2019 Nedbank Cup following a 3-2 penalty shoot-out win over Black Leopards on Monday. 

The scoreline was 1-1 after 120 minutes of football, and with this being a knockout game, there had to be a winner on the night. 

Gift Motupa opened the scoring with a first-half header, but Musonda Mwape grabbed his 10th goal of the season in similar fashion in the second half.   

Ricardo Goss was the hero has denied Karabo Tshepe and Themba Ndlovu before intimidating Lesedi Kapinga, who sent his spot-kick over the crossbar. 

The match had to be replayed following last week's postponement due to heavy rain and poor visibility at the Thohoyandou Stadium. 

After the two teams failed to agree on a new date for the match, the PSL stepped in and rescheduled the encounter for Monday to determine the eighth team for the quarterfinal round. 

When the match was abandoned last weekend, Leopards were leading 1-0, but it had to start from scratch as dictated by the PSL rules. 

Gavin Hunt made several changes to his usual starting line-up with Ricardo Goss starting in goal ahead of Darren Keet, while Granwald Scott also cracked to nod in midfield. 

Scott had not featured for the Students in a long time owing to a long-term injury, and he made his presence felt as early as the ninth minute when he picked up the first yellow card of the night. 

The two teams had a fair share of ball possession in the early stages of the first half, but Wits played with more intent in front the packed Thohoyandou Stadium; the majority which was backing the home side. 

Leopards tried to probe midway through the first period, but they couldn't breach the Wits defence which was marshalled by Thulani Hlatshwayo, who had to stop Kapinga in his tracks with a dangerous tackle after 25 minutes. 

Wits then took the lead through Gift Motupa, who headed the ball past goalkeeper Rotshidzwa Muleka from close range following a great cross by Elias Pelembe. 

At this stage, Wits were all over Leopards, who were fortunate to trail Leopards by a single goal at the end of the half, especially after Simon Murray was presented with a golden opportunity to double his side's lead from Vuyo Mere's cross. 

Wits came up with a much better game plan than the last time out at the same venue where they were behind before just before the half-time break. 

The home side started the second half the better of the two as they forced Wits to defend sit back and defend too deep. 

The pressure coupled with the support from their 12th man out in the stands eventually paid off as Musonda netted his 10th goal of the campaign across all competitions this season. 

Musonda's goal brought a sense of belief to Leopards players, as well as their fans, who knew that they stood a better a chance of eliminating Wits after having ousted Orlando Pirates in the previous round. 

Article continues below

In the end, the encounter in a 1-1 draw and extra time followed with very little happening in the final third of both sides until Musonda squandered a glorious chance to steal at the death during extra time when he missed with only Goss to beat. 

The miss proved costly in the shoot-out as Leopards missed three penalties after being given a lifeline with both Thulani Hlatshwayo and Vuyo Mere failing to convert for the home side. 

Wits join Cape Umoya United, Chippa United, Bloemfontein Celtic, Kaizer Chiefs, Cape Town City, TS Galaxy and Golden Arrows in the Last 16 which will be conducted on Thursday night.