Conference tournament action continued on Wednesday, with a glut of notable action in both men's and women's college soccer.
With the score locked at 0-0 in the second half of West Virginia’s quarterfinal matchup against Oklahoma State, the No. 8 seed had the opportunity to put the pressure on the Mountaineers. Anna Beffer stepped to the penalty spot in the 70th minute, but couldn’t beat goalkeeper Hannah Steadman, whose sensational lunging save nudged the ball onto the post to keep the score tied.
Ten minutes later, the Mountaineers struck quickly, as Amandine Pierre-Louis and Amanda Hill scored a quickfire double within two minutes of each other to make it 2-0. Even after Allie Stephenson netted an 84th minute PK to cut into the deficit, WVU survived, winning 2-1.
West Virginia’s semifinal foe will be Texas Tech, after the Red Raiders edged Oklahoma in overtime. Gwennie Puente’s far post effort opened the scoring for Tech in the 33rd minute, and Liz Keester canceled it out with a 51st minute strike. Caity Heap provided the winning tally in the 99th minute of the first overtime, kick off the celebration for the Red Raiders.
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Big 12 Co-Freshman of the Year Lauren Piercy converted the decisive penalty kick for Baylor in its 7-6 shootout win against TCU. The two sides were tied 1-1 after 110 minutes of soccer. TCU’s Meghan Murphy grabbed the first goal in the 68th minute, only for Baylor’s Bri Campos to score with ten minutes left in regulation, eventually forcing overtime. After the two scoreless rounds of overtime, eight rounds of PKs were needed to decide a winner.
In the final match of Big 12 conference tournament play in Kansas City, Mo., Kansas scripted the perfect start against Texas, grabbing a lead in the second minute thanks to Ashley Williams. The Jayhawks extended it to 2-0 in the 74th minute through Jackie Georgoulis, but the Longhorns answered back via Kayra Dollas. Kansas held on for the 2-1 victory, advancing to a semifinal matchup with Baylor.
Playing its second match in three days, LSU bolted out of the gate against No. 2 seed Missouri. Two goals in the first 18 minutes – both from freshmen, Alex Thomas and Gabriela Maldonado – LSU did just enough to hold on, conceding a second half goal to Kaitlyn Clark with 30 minutes remaining, and weathering the storm to advance to the semifinals.
With vengeance on its mind from a 4-3 loss in the regular season, Texas A&M advanced past Mississippi on Wendesday with a 2-0 victory. Neither team could find the breakthrough in the first 75 minutes before the Aggies' vaunted freshmen stepped up. First year attacker Ally Watt put A&M out in front, and six minutes later Emily Bates made it 2-0, as the Aggies outshot Ole Miss 19-7 on the day.
A familiar face helped engineer a come-from-behind victory for No. 1 seed Florida. Speedster Simone Charley had upset on her mind when she staked Vanderbilt to a 1-0 lead in the ninth minute. Jordan had the answer, as she does so often, scoring her 20th goal of the season in the 25th minute. Pam Begic eventually found the winner, scoring from a Christen Westphal assist with 14 minutes left in the game.
Penalty kicks were required in the final SEC tournament clash of the day. South Carolina led 2-0 in the 61st minute through goals from Anna Conklin and Simone Wark. Auburn cut into the lead just a minute later when Brooke Ramsier setup Kristen Dodson to make it 2-1. Welsh midfielder Ellie Leek then scored the equalizer, as the Tigers went on to win 5-3 in the shootout.
ACC Men’s First Round
In need of wins to get above the .500 mark, Louisville took a step closer, holding on to a 2-1 victory at home against Duke in the first round of the ACC tournament. Tim Kubel and Tate Schmitt scored within a minute of each other early in the first half, and all Duke could muster as a 57th minute finish from Zachary Mathers. Next on deck for Louisville is No. 1 seed Wake Forest on Sunday.
Home field advantaged suited Syracuse just fine in the other play-in match on Wednesday. Julian Buescher’s 11th minute free kick put the Orange out in front, and Chris Nanco’s second half tally rounded out the 2-0 score line. North Carolina is up next for Syracuse in the ACC tournament.