Monday, November 11, 2002
OU claims Mid-Con title, headed to NCAAs
Oakland University’s women's soccer team defeated Oral Roberts in penalty kicks to win the Mid-Continent Conference Championship on Nov. 10 and is headed to the NCAA Tournament.
The win marks Oakland's third consecutive Mid-Con Championship title and will be Oakland's second consecutive time competing in the NCAA Tournament.
"We're excited to go the NCAA's again this year," said head coach Nick O'Shea. "We will be looking to improve on last year's loss in the first round." Last year, Oakland fell 3-2 to Cincinnati in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
With the conference championship win, the Golden Grizzlies record improves to 10-11-1, and improves to a four game winning streak - the longest streak the team has seen this season.
Goalkeeper Sarah Buckland (Junior/Burlington, Ont.) was named Mid-Con Tournament MVP and Mid-Con Player of the Year. Erica Demers (Welland, Ont.), Debbie Cartmel (Senior/Merseyside, England) and Ingrid Mortensen (Freshman/Tromsdalem, Norway) were named to the All-Tournament team.
Oakland entered the Mid-Con Tournament as the third seed having lost to both Valparaiso and Oral Roberts in regular conference play. Oral Roberts was the Mid-Con regular-season champion and entered the tournament as the number one seed. Oakland defeated Valpo 1-0 on Nov. 9 and Oral Roberts defeated Southern Utah by the same score for both teams to proceed into the championship game.
The Golden Grizzlies defeated Oral Roberts in a grueling game that saw two periods of overtime before the teams went into penalty kicks. Oakland led 1-0 throughout the majority of the game off a goal from Mortensen, which came at 10th minute in the game. Mortensen's goal was off a free kick just outside the GoldenEagles 18-yard box, which deflected off an Oral Roberts player and into the back of the net.
Oakland held the 1-0 lead until Oral Roberts' Jessica Kellog tied the game with a goal 20 minutes left to play on a pass from Jodi Kirkhoff. The two teams played the rest of regulation and the majority of overtime battling up and down the field. Both teams had chances to score, however, neither team was able to put the ball in the back of the net.
Oakland scored its first four out of five penalty kicks, which was all they needed to defeat Oral Roberts 4-2 and win the conference championship.
"There was great team work today," O'Shea said. "We had players playing injured and in different positions. However, we put in a great team effort and had a great team win."
Oakland will now play in the first round of the NCAA Championships on Friday, Nov. 15. The NCAA committee will announce who Oakland will face in the first round at 4:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 11. The first and second rounds of the NCAA tournament will be played on the campus of one of the participating institutions.