WASHINGTON – On the only goal the team allowed all postseason, Santa Clara women's soccer fell at No. 5 Georgetown 1-0 Saturday afternoon in the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals. The Broncos are now 10-5 all-time with a trip to the College Cup on the line.
Santa Clara (12-7-4) kept the high-powered Georgetown (20-2-3) offense in check for most of the match. The Hoyas attempted just eight shots and put four on goal after averaging 14 and seven this year. The Broncos attempted seven shots, four on goal, against a Georgetown defense that hasn't allowed a goal in the tournament.
"There are two parts of the game," Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith said. "There's the finishing aspect and then everything else. We felt really good about everything else. We played Georgetown evenly and managed to create the better scoring chances but in finishing they had a great finish and we couldn't finish any of our chances. Credit to them for scoring a great goal. It's hard to keep that shot out of your net."
After not being able to get inside the box for many dangerous chances, Georgetown finally broke through with a long distance shot in the 76th minute. Crystal Thomas had the ball outside the right corner of the box and sent a perfect shot past the outstretched arms of Melissa Lowder and into the back of the net for the only goal of the game.
The Broncos pushed their numbers forward in the final minutes and had two chances to even the score. In the 88th minute Julie Vass hit a shot from 10 yards out that went over the crossbar.
With less than a minute to go, Vass sent a corner kick into the box that Kellie Peay got a foot on but it was saved. The ball bounced around in the box and was cleared out for another corner. With less than 10 seconds a Bronco corner came into the box but went over the net as the final seconds ticked off the clock.
"I'm very proud of my staff and our staff is very proud of the team," Smith said. "We had a great season, being in the quarterfinals. We put together a nonconference schedule that was the toughest in program history. We knew that was going to kill us or make us stronger and it made us stronger. We had some great wins and to play as well as we did in the NCAA Tournament is what every coach is hoping for. We're disappointed that we're not going on but we're going to enjoy all we accomplished this year and we're really proud of a tough, gritty group."
Jenna Roering had a perhaps the best chance of the match in the 57th minute after she got behind the defense. Roering just had the keeper to beat but Arielle Schechtman was able to make the save. Roering had another chance on the rebound but knocked it wide.
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