The William Smith College soccer team played through two overtime periods to a 0-0 tie with Vassar, and finally won their fourth straight Liberty League Tournament Championship 4-3 on penalty kicks on Saturday afternoon on Cozzens Field. The Herons are now 14-2-3 overall, and earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament.
Both Vassar and William Smith found the back of the net on the first round of penalty kicks, with sophomore Maggie Bernay scoring for the Herons. Senior Carolyn Demougeot put the Brewers up 2-1 in the second round. Senior Colleen Richards fired her penalty kick into the back of the net, and junior goalie Amanda Davis made a huge save, the only save of the shootout, to tie it up at 2-2. Vassar senior Allison McManis and William Smith junior Leah Shatkin both found the back of the net to keep it tied at 3-3. Sophomore Renee Jensen found the back of the net next, and Vassar’s final penalty kick sailed wide right to give the Herons the 4-3 win.
The majority of the first half was played in the middle third of the field with William Smith out shooting Vassar just 4-1. In the second half, the Herons took control this time holding an 11-0 advantage in shots. William Smith had a few opportunities late in the second half to break the scoreless tie.
With 10 minutes remaining in regulation, junior Leslie Carrese fired a shot on goal, but Vassar’s sophomore goalie Ali Higgins made the diving save. With just 1:22 left on the clock, senior BreLynn Nasypany took a shot from right in front, but Higgins was able to get a piece of the ball and deflect it away.
In the first overtime, William Smith took three shots. After a Heron corner kick a shot by junior Jessie Tarantino, the tournament MVP, was blocked. A few minutes later a shot by sophomore Emily Harris was also blocked by a Brewer defender.
Demougeot fired a shot on goal for Vassar in the 103rd minute, but Davis was there to make the save. It was the only one she needed to make in the game. In the 104th minute, sophomore Whitney Frary took a shot on goal that was saved. Higgins finished with nine saves in goal for the Brewers. William Smith held a 19-2 advantage in shots and a 10-1 lead in corner kicks.
The 2010 NCAA Tournament brackets will be announced on NCAA.com
The 2010 Liberty League All-Tournament Team:
Jessie Tarantino, MVP, William Smith College
BreLynn Nasypany, William Smith College,
Jamie Sawyer, William Smith College
Kelsey Hill, William Smith College
Amanda Davis, William Smith College
Alix Zongrone, Vassar College
Rachel Shea, Vassar College
Carolyn Demougeot, Vassar College
Ali Higgins, Vassar College
Alex Rimmer, Hamilton College
Kelsey Yam, Skidmore College