MIAMI, Fla. –In the program’s first ever Conference USA Tournament match, the No. 6 seeded Old Dominion women’s soccer team (8-11-1) rose to the occasion, snapping No. 3 seeded Florida Atlantic’s (12-8-1) six match unbeaten streak via a 2-1 ODU victory on Wednesday night at the FIU Soccer Stadium.
The win places Angie Hind’s Lady Soccer Monarchs in the 2015 Conference USA Semifinals on Friday, when they will take on No. 2 seeded Marshall at 7:00 p.m. Old Dominion and Marshall met on Oct. 30 in Huntington, in a match the Thundering Herd stole in double overtime, 1-0.
“I think getting to the tournament was a goal for us this year, considering where the program has been,” said ODU head coach Angie Hind. “We wanted to get to the tournament and then we would be quite comfortable with whoever we played. We obviously had not played FAU this year, but we were well scouted on their shape and their style, so we were just looking forward to the game being here and testing ourselves again.”
21 minutes into the match, ODU freshman Iris Achterhof drilled a corner kick which found teammate Grace Haverly, who one-timed the ball into the back of the Florida Atlantic net, giving the Lady Soccer Monarchs an early 1-0 lead. The goal is Haverly's third of the season, while the assist was Achterhof's fifth of the year. ODU's goal was the first goal FAU's goalkeeper, Sydney Drinkwater, has allowed in the last 603 minutes, which is over six matches worth. Prior to tonight, the last time the Owls allowed a goal was on Oct. 4 against Rice.
“I think that the goal gave us some momentum,” explained Haverly. “We came into the game and wanted it; but we have never been here before so there wasn’t much pressure on us. I just know that everyone wanted this win so bad, so getting the first goal was really good for us.”
The Lady Monarchs would take the 1-0 advantage with them into halftime. ODU led the shot count 6-4 in the first 45 minutes of action. FAU held a slim advantage in the corner kick department, 4-3.
In the 70th minute, Old Dominion’s Iris Achterhof booted a beautiful ball from 25 yards out over FAU’s keeper’s head and into the back of the Owls’ net, giving the Lady Monarchs a 2-0 lead with 20 minutes to play. Madison Hogan was credited with her third assist of the year, while the goal was Achterhof’s team leading seventh of the season.
In the 87th minute, FAU’s senior forward Claire Emslie became Florida Atlantic's all-time leading scorer when she cut the deficit in half. Sammy Rowland crossed ball to Emslie who sent her shot while standing on the 18-yard line into the right upper-90. The goal was the 29th of her career.
Despite the Owls’ late goal, it was Lady Monarchs who held on to prevail for the tournament’s first upset and advance to Friday night’s semifinal match against No. 2 seeded Marshall at 7:00 p.m. EST.
For the match, Old Dominion’s Erin Kinz came up big with six saves, five in the closing 45 minutes, while FAU’s Sydney Drinkwater tallied seven for the game.
FINAL STATS FAU: 0-1=1 ODU: 1-1=2
20:14: ODU goal by Grace Haverly assisted by Iris Achterhof, 1-0 69:17: ODU goal by Iris Achterhof assisted by Madison Hogan, 2-0 86:44: FAU goal by Claire Emslie assisted by Sammy Rowland, 2-1