Nicole Martin Sends No. 3 Women's Soccer Past No. 14 Concordia 2-1
Photos by Danny Reise
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St. Louis, Mo., November 16, 2012 — Senior back Nicole Martin scored a pair of goals, including the game-winning penalty kick in the 71st minute, to lead No. 3 ranked Washington University in St. Louis to a 2-1 victory over No. 14 Concordia-Moorhead in the 2012 NCAA Division III Women’s Soccer Sectional Semifinals on Friday night in St. Louis.
“We just kept our cool and we knew that our system worked. We just kept trying to get behind the ball and their top shooters,” said Martin, who entered the game with one goal in 46 career games. “My role is to be at the top of the box for something just like that to happen. Doyle put in a great ball and our team was able to put it in the box and it came out. It was just right in front of me and I headed it and it went in.”
Washington University (19-1-1), which picked up its school-record 19th win of the season, hosts No. 11 Wheaton College on Saturday at 5 p.m. in the Sectional Championship. The Thunder posted a 4-0 win over Washington U. on Sept. 15, handing the Bears their lone loss of the 2012 season. Wheaton also ended the Bears’ season in 2011 with a 4-2 victory in the Sectional Championship in Wheaton, Ill.
Wheaton (20-3-2) rallied for a 2-1 overtime victory over No. 2 and previously unbeaten Hardin-Simmons University in the opening match on Friday. The Thunder tied the contest with 19 seconds remaining on a goal by Kristin Rauh, and then Ally Witt dropped in the game-winner just 34 seconds into overtime.
Concordia-Moorhead (17-4-1) wasted no time taking the lead as Sarah Rounds drilled a left-footed shot from 20 yards out to the near corner that senior goalkeeper Clara Jaques had no chance at. The goal for Rounds was her team-leading 14th of the season.
Washington U. had the equalizer in the 36th minute after the Bears took advantage of a foul in the corner. Junior midfielder Kate Doyle sent the cross into the box that was punched out by Concordia goalkeeper Ali Nelson. Martin picked up the rebound and headed the ball over Nelson’s head into an open goal. (WATCH GOAL) Washington U. had an 8-6 advantage in shots in the first half.
Concordia nearly regained the lead at the 50:16 mark after Jaques stopped a header by Gina Weiss on a diving save. The game remained in a tie until the 71st minute, when junior Becky Berels was taken down in the box resulting in the penalty kick.
“We were able to clamp down on defense and improve as the minutes rolled on. I think we were going to make adjustments regardless at halftime, but when you can go into halftime equalized instead of down one, it changes things,” said fifth-year Washington University head coach Jim Conlon. “I don’t think it changed our intensity or our desire at all, and then we just needed to make a couple fine tune adjustments and away we go.”
Washington U. had a 24-9 advantage in shots for the game, including a 16-3 mark in the second half. Concordia took the only corner kick in the contest in the first half. Jaques made three saves in the win and picked up her single-season school record 19th win of the season. Nelson recorded 12 saves in the loss for Concordia.
Bear Notebook: Washington U. is 22-10-5 all-time in the NCAA Tournament, while Concordia is 6-6-1 … The Bears are 11-0-1 this season at home and is unbeaten in its last 21 games at Francis Field … Washington U. is making its sixth appearance in the NCAA Quarterfinals, posting a 2-3 all-time mark.