Pate's Game-Winner In Double OT Sends The Griffins To The SLIAC Championship

Pate's Game-Winner In Double OT Sends The Griffins To The SLIAC Championship

Photo taken by SLIAC Director of Athletic Communications, Brian Lovellette

ST. LOUIS, Mo.—The Fontbonne University women's soccer team are off to its second straight St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) Championship game after Jacey Pate's double overtime winner gave the Griffins a 3-2 (2OT) victory over Greenville.

In the 106th minute of the second OT, Ellen Weaver got the ball down the right side and crossed it at the top of the box. Meredith Wendt was there but she missed on her shot attempt. However, the ball went right to the trailing Pate and she beat Panthers net-minder, Hope Brakenhoff, on the short-side to give FBU the win.

The Griffins (11-9; 7-2 SLIAC), outshot Greenville 23-11 in the outing. Pate not only netted the game winner but tied Ellen Weaver in shots with five. Weaver, a St. Charles, Missouri, native, had herself a night with a goal and an assist.

Leann Smith netted her second of the season, while Meredith Wendt totaled a season-high three assists. In net, Makayla Hussong got the victory after making five saves.

Greenville, meanwhile, gave everything they had and then some in the tough defeat. Dani Pearce and Suzi Conner each scored a goal, while Hope Brakenhoff stood tall in net, keeping the Panthers in it with her 10 saves.

In the first half, it didn't take long for Fontbonne to get on the board. Wendt raced down the left side of the field and her cross landed right on the foot of the cutting Ellen Weaver, who buried her shot in to give them a 1-0 lead.

Fontbonne went on to have a shot advantage of 7-2 the rest of the way but Brakenhoff kept the deficit at one for the Panthers heading into the break.

In the second half, Greenville picked its offense up and it paid off in the 57th minute. The team was awarded a corner kick and Dani Pearce's cross found the foot of Ellie Cummins, who had a shot at goal but her shot was blocked on the near post.

The ball, though went right to Suzi Conner and she scored the equalizer to make it a brand new game. Fontbonne answered with three shots over the next 20 minutes but to no avail.

Then, in the 77th minute, Linsey Klein ripped a shot from 30 yards out to the far post and Brakenhoff made a diving save to knock it out of play.

On the corner kick, Daniele Caruso's cross went to Wendt but her shot was blocked. Awaiting to kick in the bouncing ball was Smith as she scored with her left foot to give FBU its lead back at 2-1.

Fontbonne continued to hold onto that advantage up until the 82nd minute. The Griffins cleared the ball out but Gabbie Hartin sent it back in with a high towering shot.

The ball eventually got away from the Griffins defense and Pearce was right there to net the equalizer to force overtime.

In the first OT, Fontbonne outshot the Panthers 3-2, however, neither squad netted the game winner so it was off to the final OT. That's where Pate was the hero and she was able to send the Griffins off to the SLIAC Championship with her ninth on the season.

FBU will look for redemption this Saturday as they'll pay a visit once again to the reigning SLIAC Champions, Webster University. Kick-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

Fans make sure to stay updated on fontbonnegriffins.com throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the women's soccer team.