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No. 4 Winthrop Edges No. 5 Liberty, 3-2 in Overtime
The Lady Eagles, down 2-0 at intermission, scored goal in the opening minutes of the second half and another in the last minute of regulation to force the contest into overtime.
In a heartbreaking loss for Liberty, Winthrop quickly scored less than a minute into overtime to move into the semifinals of the tournament and faces the winner of No.1 seed Coastal Carolina and No. 8 seed VMI, a match scheduled for later today.
The Lady Flames end their season with a 6-12 record, while Winthrop improves its record to 7-7-4, and advances to the semifinals for its second-straight year.
Liberty controlled the first half of the contest, scoring twice. The Lady Flames struck for the first goal of the contest at 4:34. All-Big South first-team midfielder Amy Oberlin (Jr., Ada, Mich.) took advantage of a corner kick by teammate Mallory Neff (Jr., MF, Sunbury, Pa.), heading the kick into the net for an early 1-0 advantage. The goal was Oberlin's team-leading sixth of the season.
The Lady Flames extended their lead to 2-0 in the 40th minute of play. Forward Rachel Hetrick (Sr., Grantville, Pa.) pushed the ball up the right sideline and sent a crossing pass in front of the net. Kendall Bartholomew headed the ball past Winthrop keeper Dimitra Poulos for her fourth goal of the year, at 39:04.
For the half, Liberty held an 8-3 shot advantage.
Winthrop quickly cut into the Liberty edge during the opening minutes of the second period. A shot by Ashley Bader found the lower of the net at 48:52. Chelsea White and Tricia Vensel assisted on the score.
Later in the 75th minute, the Lady Flames attempted to widen their lead, when Hetrick fired a shot which rebounded off the post.
In the last minute of regulation, Winthrop knotted the contest sending it into overtime. Bader scored her second goal of the game on a short header off a crossing pass from Erin Foote at 89:12 to tie the game at 2-2.
Winthrop scored the game-winning goal 39 seconds into overtime. Katie Schraudenbach found Foote with a pass, which the midfielder scored for the Eagle victory.
Winthrop goalkeeper Poulos tallied four saves in the victory, while Liberty keeper Lauren Kamphuis (So., Bloomington, Ill.) recorded one save in the game.
Winthrop head coach Melissa Heinz
"I think that we had a little bit of nerves in the first half, and coming into the second half we just kept believing. We never stopped believing. I changed the line up a little because when you are losing, 2-0 there is nothing to lose. You can see what happens when you have a full team of believers."
Liberty head coach James Price
"We are good at kicking the ball and running, but mentally we shot ourselves in the foot. Winthrop kept going and going, and we wish them the best in the next round."