Wittenberg Defeats Ohio Northern 3-1 in First Round NCAA III Tournament Game
Friday, November 13, 2009
GRAND RAPIDS—As NCAA Tournament play began at Calvin’s Zuidema Field Friday afternoon in the first of two First Round match-ups, an opportunistic Wittenberg University played Ohio University to a 3-1 Tigers victory, and will play the winner of the second match-up between host Calvin College and the Presidents of Washington and Jefferson.
In the first half of play both teams played tough and kept the score close, with Wittenburg tapping in the opening goal in the 23rd off of a rebound shot. Sheryl Chambers scored the goal, her eighth of the year, on the goal line after the Ohio Northern keeper made a great diving stop on a shot from Wittenberg forward Kailey Striebel, who was credited with the assist. At 1-0 the first half came to a close, but goal scoring was only just to come for Wittenberg.
The second half saw three goals total, with Wittenberg upping their lead to a final 3-1 score. In the 51st minute of play junior midfielder Erin McLeish launched a free kick from 30 yards out, putting it over the keeper’s head for a 2-0 Tigers lead. Wittenberg would take a 3-0 lead only 14 minutes later after a corner kick cross found the head of Striebel, the second goal of the game she was apart of. With a three goal lead, the game was all but set in stone for the Tigers.
Ohio Northern (15-5-2) made things interesting though by scoring a goal in the 71st minute, a header from freshman midfielder Tara Tokar. The Wittenberg defense made an attempted clearance in the box and the weakly played ball went straight to Tokar, who popped a header into the right half of the goal. At 3-1, there was still a flicker of hope for the Polar Bears, but stout defense played by Wittenberg for the remainder of the game ended the scoring for Ohio Northern, and closed the game at 3-1.
Wittenberg (12-4-5) will play Calvin (14-4-1), a 4-0 winner over Washington and Jefferson in Friday’s second first round game. Saturday’s Calvin/Wittenberg game will begin at 1:00 p.m. at Calvin’s Zuidema Field.