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►  WVWC, NDC Advance In Women’s Soccer Tournament

West Virginia Wesleyan and Notre Dame College each won in the first round of the NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament. The Bobcats blanked Gannon, 2-0, while the Falcons overcame a 1-0 halftime deficit with a pair of goals in the second half to claim their first-ever NCAA Tournament victory.

Notre Dame advances to take on top-seeded West Chester on Sunday at noon. West Virginia Wesleyan will play second-seeded East Stroudsburg at 2 p.m.

#5 Notre Dame 2, #4 Kutztown 1

After trailing 1-0 at halftime, the Notre Dame College women’s soccer team came out strong in the second 45 minutes to win 2-1 against Kutztown in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. This is the first NCAA postseason win for the NDC program.

Within the first minute of the second half, MEC Offensive Player of the Year, Alexis Manoa scored on a corner kick, curving the ball into the net.

Less than 10 later, fellow senior Jackie Corrigan scored on a header, which was assisted by Manoa.

Manoa and Corrigan both lead the team with nine goals apiece this season after defeating the No. 4 seeded Golden Bears.

“We needed big performances today and we got them,” said head coach Mike Shiels. “I’m so proud of the team and what they have accomplished so far. Kutztown is a very good team and to get a result against them was fantastic.”

Part of those big performances was freshman goalkeeper Kyra McDowell who matched her career best six saves. McDowell faced 12 shots and seven corner kicks to earn her 13th win in her debut season. The Ogden, Utah native tied the NDC single-season wins record with this Tournament victory.

The Falcons pressured the Golden Bear defense in the second half to earn three corner kicks after attempting none in the first half. Both goals were results of corner kicks as Notre Dame was able to take advantage of their positioning on the field.

NDC relied heavily on their starters, like many of their games this season, as their three midfielders and four defenders played all 90 minutes of the contest.

Notre Dame advances to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and will play #18 West Chester on Sunday, November 12, at noon.

West Virginia Wesleyan 2, Gannon 0

West Virginia Wesleyan scored a goal in each half and posted its 16th shutout of the season in a 2-0 win over Gannon in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Natalie Prater’s free kick from 30 yards out in the 24th minute of the game provided the Bobcats (18-2-1) a lead it would not relinquish. Despite pressure from Gannon (13-5-2) in the second half, WVWC got an insurance goal as Carolyn Saulle chipped the goalkeeper from the edge of the box after taking a feed from Kelsie Hibbs.

Ashlee Schumacher and Chelsea Hubner shared time in goal on Friday with Schumacher playing the first half and Hubner playing the second. Schumacher made three saves, while Hubner made four stops and was under pressure in the second half and also stopped a penalty kick shortly after WVWC went up 2-0. Gannon outshot the Bobcats, 16-7 in the game, including 11-2 in the second half. The Knights also had six corner kicks compared to just one for West Virginia Wesleyan.

The Bobcats will now take on second-seeded East Stroudsburg on Sunday at 2 p.m. on the the Warriors home field.

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