Women’s Soccer Advances to Semifinals with 4-2 Victory Over Lakers
DAHLONEGA, Ga. – For the third year in a row, the North Georgia College & State University women's soccer team has advanced to the Peach Belt Conference Tournament semifinal round. The Saints defeated Clayton State University 4-2 at the North Georgia Soccer Field Tuesday night for the right to head to Augusta, Ga. for the second round of the tournament.
The victory improves the Saints' record to 14-3-2 for the season and keeps their hopes for making a second-consecutive trip to the NCAA Division II Tournament alive as Lander University lost earlier Tuesday, helping North Georgia's region chances.
Clayton State, which entered the match as the tournament's No. 5 seed, ends its season with a record of 10-7-2.
Tuesday night's PBC Tournament quarterfinal match was the second meeting of the season between the Saints and the Lakers and the fourth meeting in the last two years. In the four meetings, the Saints now hold a 3-0-1 record against the Lakers having outscored them 12-4 which includes a 2-2 tie earlier this season at the North Georgia Soccer Field.
Junior midfielder Kelly Penston led the Saints' attack with a great performance that included scoring the Saints first two goals of the game and to go along with setting up another later in the contest.
After going down 2-0, Clayton State's Natalia Valentine was able to avoid the shutout when she scored off a ball that Lea Notthoff played into the box.
But that small victory would be short lived as Abby Trevino scored less than a minute later off Penston's assist to stretch the lead back out to two before Valentine once again cut the deficit with her second goal in two minutes.
As they have done all season, the Saints out-shot their opponent 21-10 and held an 8-1 advantage in corner kicks.
Laoise O'Driscoll made seven saves between the pipes for Clayton State while Mallory Sayre had three of her own.
North Georgia will now prepare to take on the No. 1 team in the nation, Armstrong Atlantic State University, in Friday's semifinal game after Armstrong defeated the University of Montevallo 1-0 in their own quarterfinal match Tuesday afternoon. The last time the Saints and Pirates met, the Pirates were able to escape with a 4-3 win in overtime. Friday's game will kick off at 5:00 p.m. in Augusta.