HARRISONBURG, Va., Nov. 10, 2013 - The James Madison women's soccer team came up just short in its quest for a fourth Colonial Athletic Association Championship title, falling 3-1 to Northeastern in the championship game Sunday at University Park.
Northeastern (6-8-6) receives the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Women's Soccer Championship, while the Dukes (15-5-1) must wait until Monday's NCAA.com Selection Show to see if they receive an at-large bid. The selection show will air at 4:30 p.m.
The game started out fast as both team’s scored in the first 10 minutes. Northeastern went up 1-0 in the ninth minute on Hannah O’Donnell’s first goal of the season. A blocked shot bounced backward to O’Donnell, who fired a shot from the top of the box to the lower left corner of the net.
JMU turned to its top goal scorer, junior Katie Hyland (Islip, N.Y.), to tie the game less than a minute later. Senior Lauren Wilson (Coatesville, Pa./Downingtown) dribbled into the box and passed right to a wide open Hyland, who finished for her ninth goal of the year and second of the postseason.
But the Huskies weren’t finished in the first half. They added another goal in the 25th minute, a game-winner by Lahaina Zoller. The goal came following a rebound off a header by Morgan Hilby.
JMU came out aggressive in the second half. It had numerous scoring chances and outshot the Huskies 8-1.
Unfortunately for the Dukes, the Huskies’ lone shot of the half was a goal in the 82nd minute to put them up 3-1. Hanna Terry scored the final goal, her team-leading fifth of the season. She was named the Most Outstanding Player of the CAA Championship.
Northeastern goalie Paige Burnett had an outstanding game against JMU, stopping seven of the eight shots she faced. The Dukes’ Ellen Forrest (Midlothian, Va./James River) finished with two saves, before giving way to Marlee Stynchula (Fairfax, Va./W.T. Woodson) in the 74th minute as numerous changes were made in an attempt to get the game-tying goal.
The Dukes have a strong case to receive an at-large berth to the NCAA Championship. Following a 3-3 start to the year, they went 11-1-1 over their final 13 games and won the CAA regular season title. Head coach Dave Lombardo’s squad then added a 3-1 win over fourth-seeded Hofstra in the semifinals of the conference tournament. The Dukes have qualified for the NCAA postseason 10 times, including seven at-large bids.