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Mace & Crown | October 23, 2017

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Lady Monarchs get a Thrilling comeback win on Senior Night

Lady Monarchs get a Thrilling comeback win on Senior Night
Matt O’Brien
Sports Editor

The ODU Women’s soccer team is slowly but surely battling their way back into the Conference USA. On Senior Night, Friday Oct. 16, the Lady Monarchs (6-9-0) took on the Charlotte 49ers (5-10-0) in a game that led to a thrilling finish. After trailing 1-0 for almost the entire second half, the Monarchs scored two goals in a three minute span to complete the comeback win in overtime.

“In the second half we just pushed and pushed and pushed. I love what I saw from the girls tonight. Luckily we got a little break at the end and Maddie just tucked it away nicely,” Head Coach Angie Hind said.

The night began honoring the team’s two seniors, midfielder Devin Dougherty and defender Jordan Jones. The Lady Monarchs came out fired up and seemed to feed off their home crowd early on.

“It was very special for Jordan and I to celebrate a night like this together. We have been playing on the same team for eight years now dating back to our club play. We have certainly been through a lot since we arrived here,” Dougherty said.

With the added emotion from their seniors the Lady Monarchs came out very strong, generating some early chances and getting some tough play from goalkeeper Erin Kinz. Kinz was eager in goal and was quick to attack any forwards who got the ball behind the defense. Ten minutes in to the game she took a knee to the head after diving for the ball. Luckily, she was able to remain in the game.

The first half proved to be uneventful until the end. Both teams had some early chances while the Lady Monarchs actually out-shot the 49ers 5-4.

“We started off strong in the first but slowed down. Charlotte is a really good team and probably should be a little better off than they are right now,” Hind said.

In the 35th minute the Monarchs surrendered a free kick. The nations 10th leading scorer Abby Marshall converted the free kick as it went off the outstretched hand of Kinz.

“We had a few chances in the first half. We wanted to keep focusing on playing the ball forward and getting it to our scorers. We had to force them to play our game and possess the ball more,” Forward Madison Hogan said.

Along with upping the tempo offensively, Hind also made a personnel change, moving Kathryn Hill from defense to midfield which would prove to be very beneficial later on.

The second half showcased the Lady Monarch offense. They were able to out-shoot the 49ers 11 to 1.

“As the game went on we began to gain more and more territory and push our players forward the way we wanted to,” Hind said.

ODU remained patient down to the very end. Hogan had one of the best chances of the night and was robbed by the 49er goalkeeper. Hogan remained persistent and finally got the touch she was looking for in the 89th minute on a through ball from Hill. Hogan fired the ball into the back of the net as the home crowd erupted.

“I had my chances throughout the game. I was waiting for my chance. When I turned and took a touch I realized I had time and tried to place the ball as best I could,” Hogan said.

Hogan’s goal forced overtime and the Lady Monarchs wasted little time and created some offense right off the bat. Just 80 seconds in to the overtime period the Lady Monarchs were awarded a corner kick. Iris Achterhof placed a nice ball where only her teammate Dierdre Bradley could get it as she buried the header into the back of the net.

“Dierdre has brought so much to this program in the two years she has been here and now that shes scoring some goals I think it will only push her to work harder going forward,” Hind said.

Bradley was ironically recruited as a forward but Hind has since pushed her back to the middle and the back of the pitch depending on the game. She did not score her first collegiate goal until last Tuesday.

The comeback victory gives the Lady Monarchs a 4-2 record in conference play. The team takes on North Texas next week and continues their conference play.

“It was amazing to see how excited the girls were tonight. We wanted to win this one for our seniors and it really showed as we fought to the very end. We deserved this win tonight,” Hogan said.