Columbus – Stephanie Lowery scored two first half goals en route to No. 11 Columbus State's 2-1 non-conference victory over No. 14 North Alabama Friday night at the Walden Soccer Complex in Columbus, GA.
CSU improves to 12-1 on the season while the Lions fall to 8-3-1. It was the third ranked opponent they have defeated this season and hold a 3-1 mark overall against teams inside the Top 25.
The Lady Cougars came out of the gates roaring as Chelsea Person received a through ball from Kansas Bayly and ripped a shot just inside the box that clanked off the crossbar just 2:28 into the contest.
Another great ball came minutes later as Ashley Miller found a streaking Stephanie Lowery who was taken down in the box and awarded a penalty kick. The senior calmly placed it in the back of the net for her sixth goal of the season.
There were a couple of more chances for CSU early on as Person was denied on a great diving save by the UNA goalkeeper and Bayly also hit the crossbar in the 24th minute.
Lowery put the Lady Cougars in front 2-0 in at the 30:02 mark as she received another through ball, this time from Kelsey Pelletier as the two-time All-American netted her second goal of the game. It was her seventh career multi-goal effort.
The Sandy, Utah native continues her assault on CSU and PBC record books as she is now eighth and ninth in PBC history in career points (97) and goals scored (40), respectively. She is also one game-winning goal away from being tied for the the most in program history as she currently has 17.
Columbus State kept on pressing throughout the contest as Nikki Turnbull hit the post in the 38th minute and Shelby Rolling had a dangerous header in the 56th minute.
Lowery tried to became the first Lady Cougar since October 15, 2010 to score a hat trick for the red, white and blue as a magnificent save by Morgan Grace denied her the opportunity. Stephanie Parrish was the last CSU player to register a hat trick as she did so against Barry in a 4-3 overtime victory. She also became CSU's all-time leading scorer in the match.
It wasn't all sunshine for the home team as they committed a foul in in the 64th minute about 30 yards away from net. The kick was put into the box and the clear attempt by CSU went backwards and into the net cutting the lead in half to 2-1.
UNA continue to press forward and nearly got the equalizer four minutes later as the reigning Division II Daktronics Player of the Year Chloe Roberts drilled a shot from 25 yards out that hit the crossbar.
That was the last legitimate scoring threat for the visitors as the Lady Cougar backline clamped down to secure the victory.
Mary Mancin picked up the win for Columbus State picking up three saves in 90 minutes of action while Morgan Grace had tremendous game for North Alabama making seven saves.
CSU controlled the majority of the action of the contest outshooting UNA 22-5 and holding a 12-1 advantage in corner kicks.
The Lady Cougars have a short turnaround as they return to the pitch on Sunday, October 14 when they host PBC rival Clayton State. The afternoon match-up is scheduled to kickoff at 1:00 p.m. at the Walden Soccer Complex.