JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (September 26, 2008) - After dropping it last four tough non-conference matches, the ETSU women's soccer team opened Atlantic Sun Conference play with a 2-1 overtime victory Friday, in Jacksonville, Fla. With the win the Bucs improve to 3-4-0 overall and 1-0-0 in A-Sun action, while Jacksonville drops to 3-5-1 overall and 0-1-0 in league action.
"Tonight was a battle," said head coach Heather Henson. "It was a good hard fought match between two tough minded teams. Jacksonville is a well-coached team and I'm proud of our girls sticking with our game-plan and coming out with our second overtime victory of the season."
After both teams missed a number of scoring chances in the first half, ETSU would break through the scoreless tie with just over 10 minutes gone off the clock in the second half. After a Jacksonville foul, ETSU would take advantage of a free kick in its offensive zone, as sophomore forward Rachel Van Horn (Thousand Oaks, Calif.), found fellow classman and Floridian midfielder Terri Miller (Cape Coral, Fla.), for the matches first goal in the 61st minute.
As in most intense conference matches Jacksonville would respond. Ten minutes later, the Dolphins Sian Senior fired a long over-the-top pass around the Bucs defense, where fellow Jacksonville teammate Devin Dowell knocked in the game-tying goal in the 70th minute.
Both teams would continue to battle for possession during the reminder of the second half, sending the match into the 10 minute golden-goal overtime period.
Like they did earlier in the season against Morehead State, ETSU would show its character and composure in the extra frame, as junior forward Jordan Monty (Mesquite, Texas) found sophomore midfielder Kelly Brinkman (Clearwater, Fla.) for the game-winning goal, with six minutes off the clock.
Defensively, for the Bucs freshman goalkeeper Megan Masch (Virginia Beach, Va.), made a career-high eight saves on night, keeping the Bucs in the contest.
"I think after Jacksonville scored its goal, our team did a great job readjusting to our game plan," said Henson. "In the overtime period our midfielders did a good job finding our forward's feet and keeping the pressure on their team. That created Jordan's (Monty) opportunity to find Kelly (Brinkman) on the weak side of the box and for the game's final goal. At the same time I have to give credit to Megan (Masch). Holding a good offensive team like Jacksonville to one goal is hard to do, but with help from our back four defenders, Megan came up big tonight."
ETSU returns to action with a 3 p.m., Sunday contest at A-Sun rival North Florida. The Lady Ospreys defeated USC Upstate 2-1, Friday night in its home conference opener.
For more information about ETSU women's soccer please visitwww.ETSUBUCS.com.