GOLDEN – In a season full of firsts, Colorado School of Mines women's soccer added another to its impressive resume as the NSCAA No. 2 Orediggers became the first team to three-peat in the RMAC Tournament, holding off No. 24 Fort Lewis 2-1 Sunday in the championship in Golden.
The win was the 16th in a row for the Orediggers who improved to 3-0-0 all-time in the title match.
With two close wins already in the books this season against the Skyhawks, Mines immediately put Fort Lewis on its heels Sunday as freshman Holly Weyand played a long clear to classmate Anna Deleray who capped a 1-v-1 breakaway 4:13 into the match with a carom off the left post from the penalty stripe.
Less than eight minutes later, senior RMAC Tournament MVP Anna Evans extended the lead to two, curving a left-footed corner kick from the right side under the far crossbar at 11:49 for her RMAC-leading 14th goal and seventh go-ahead score in 2013.
The Orediggers remained the aggressor throughout much of the first 45:00 until Therese Romero ended the shutout with 1:37 left, stinging a low, 20-yard look from the left wing that was initially stopped by keeper Jayln Yates before trickling across the goal line.
With the roles reversed, the Skyhawks (16-5) went on the offensive in the second half, outshooting Mines 9-1 in search of the equalizer. However, Yates (19-0-1) and the defensive third thwarted any scoring opportunity as the Goalkeeper of the Year swiped five of her seven saves – her second-highest single-game total this season – in the frame.
Evans and Deleray combined for five of the team's eight shots, including all three shots on target.
Bolstered by the hastened second half, Fort Lewis (16-5) compiled advantages of 15-8 in shots, 9-3 in shots on goal and 7-3 in corner tries. The Skyhawks are the only team to limit Mines to less than 10 shots this season, doing so in each of their three meetings.
The first team to sweep the RMAC regular season and tournament titles since Metro State in 2008, Mines (19-0-1) is fifth in Division II history in longest unbeaten streaks at 34 straight. The women also rank 17th in consecutive conference matches without a loss with 26 and are tied for 13th in consecutive conference wins with 19.
Guaranteed of a sixth straight NCAA berth in the program's nine-year history, Mines will find out its postseason seeding in next weekend's regional during the NCAA Division II Women's Soccer Selection Show at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 11 on www.ncaa.com. Six teams from the South Central region advance to the 48-team championship field.