Women’s Soccer in the Midst of Historic Season
The Athenas Soccer team is rewriting its history books. Despite being the 4th seed in the four team regional tournament played at Redlands this weekend, the Athenas notched two upset wins on Saturday and Sunday, advancing to the NCAA Round of 16 for the first time in program history. In Saturday’s first round matchup, the ladies took on top-seed Hardin-Simmons University. The Athenas thoroughly dominated the Cowgirls in regulation and two overtime periods, outshooting them 28-7. The game featured two of the finer goalies in the nation, CMS’s own Camila Friedman-Gerlicz (CMC JR), who was recently crowned SCIAC Athlete of the Week for her performance in the SCIAC Tournament, and Christi Carr, the Cowgirls’ All-American goalie.
Eighty minutes of regulation and two overtime periods were not enough for these two teams, and so the match went into penalty kicks. HSU had won three times in the past two NCAA tournaments on PKs, but Friedman-Gerlicz and the Athenas were set on breaking that streak.
Both teams converted their first two tries, before Friedman-Gerlicz saved the Cowgirls’ third attempt. The Athenas matched the Cowgirls in the fourth round, and had a chance to put their opponent away in the fifth frame. Whistle…shot…post. Onto sudden death rounds. HSU missed wide in the seventh round and this time, Sarah Blavet (CMC SR) put one through and pushed the Athenas onward.
In Sunday’s second round, the Athenas were set to take on UC Santa Cruz’s Banana Slugs, who upset host Redlands the night before. The Athenas won their earlier season matchup with the Slugs 4-2, but the stakes had changed and no one was counting the Slugs out.
The women started scoring early though, and did not look back. Laura Hagen (CMC SO) netted her 15th goal of the season eight minutes into the game, with Blavet recording the assist. Giselle Galanto (CMC JR) added a second goal later in the half.
Hagen added her 16th just three minutes into the second period, and Nicole Sady-Kennedy (CMC JR) all but finished the Slugs off with a fourth goal five minutes after Hagen. 4-0 Athenas! The defense put on another watertight performance and gave their netminder take a relatively easy night between the pipes.
The CMS Athenas will play Carleton College of Minnesota in the Round of 16 at a site and time to be announced Monday.
For an NCAA DIII Bracket, click here.
For information about the next round, click here.