The William Smith College soccer team captured its third straight Liberty League Championship, as the ninth-ranked Herons defeated Hamilton 2-0 this afternoon on Cozzens Field. With the victory, William Smith improve to 13-3-2 overall and earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament. The Continentals drop to 9-6-1.
After a scoreless first half, the Herons broke through with their first goal in the 51st minute. First-year Renee Jensen beat a Continental defender to a loose ball and chipped a lead pass to sophomore Chelsea England. England carried the ball closer to the goal, drawing Hamilton goalie Kate Fowler out of her net, then took the shot from about 15 yards in front. The tally marked England’s second of the year, and second game-winner.
Ten minutes later, William Smith benefitted from an own goal. First-year Whitney Frary lofted a corner kick that Jensen headed toward the goal. A Hamilton defender tried to clear the ball, but kicked it into the net instead.
Anne Graveley had two great scoring opportunities for the Continentals in the first half. She ripped a shot that hit the crossbar in the 13th minute, and then got loose for a one-on-one shot vs. Heron sophomore goalkeeper Amanda Davis that went just wide in the 35th minute.
William Smith held a 13-6 advantage in shots, including 8-1 on goal. The Herons also enjoyed a 7-2 edge in corner kicks.
Davis, named the Liberty League Tournament MVP, picked up one save in her 12th shutout of the year, while Fowler recorded five stops for Hamilton.
The 2009 NCAA Tournament brackets will be announced Mon., Nov. 9, around 10 a.m.
The 2009 Liberty League All-Tournament Team:
Amanda Davis, MVP, William Smith College
Renee Jensen, William Smith College
BreLynn Nasypany, William Smith College
Whitney Frary, William Smith College
Kate Redmond, William Smith College
Jamie Sawyer, William Smith College
Anne Graveley, Hamilton
Meg Pengue, Hamilton
Lindsay Schmitt, Skidmore
Katie McLean, Union