APSU Sports: Austin Peay Soccer
Martin, TN – Austin Peay State University women’s soccer team battled regular season champion UT Martin in Sunday’s Ohio Valley Conference Championship match but two late goals by the hosts were too much for the Lady Govs to overcome. Austin Peay fell to UT Martin, 2-0, in the 2012 OVC Tournament Championship match at Skyhawk Field.Austin Peay (12-8-1) falls in the OVC Championship match for the second time since 2010, when the Lady Govs lost to host Morehead State. UT Martin (13-5-3) wins its second consecutive OVC Tournament title.
“It was a hard-fought battle,” said head coach Kelley Guth. “I’m very proud of the season we had. We’ve come a long way and we have a lot to be proud of this year.”
The teams would trade possession in the midfield for the early part of the first half. Neither side would attempt a shot until junior Morgan Zigelsky’s 20th minute laser that was saved by UT Martin’s Mariah Klenke.
In the 30th minute, sophomore Claire Pultz lobbed an Austin Peay corner kick into the box, where junior Joceline Quiceno headed it toward the net. Klenke punched that away to keep the match scoreless.
Junior Haylee Shoaff would pull off an amazing save in the 39th minute to keep the two sides level. UT Martin’s Dominika Conc got in behind the Lady Govs defense and steamrolled toward the goal unimpeded. Shoaff was able to deflect the shot out of bounds and Austin Peay cleared the ensuing corner kick to take the match into halftime with no score.
Austin Peay got the first good chance in the second period. In the 52nd minute, a pass through the box by senior Emily Perkins found junior Andy Quiceno’s foot. When Klenke came out to challenge, Quiceno fired a shot that went just left of the net.
Two minutes later, Perkins charged toward the net and fired a shot wide to the right, keeping the pressure on the UT Martin defense.
UT Martin got a chance at the 60-minute mark off a corner kick. Lucy Pater headed the ball over Shoaff’s outstretched hands, but the ball ricocheted off the cross bar and Austin Peay was able to clear it away.
Andy Quiceno got another chance in the 65th minute, breaking away from the pack. Klenke came out to meet her and made the one-on-one save to keep the game scoreless.
In the 81st minute, Midori Sera bounced a goal in off the upper left corner of the cross bar to give the Skyhawks some breathing room. Austin Peay tried to rally late, but the Lady Govs couldn’t find an answer for Klenke, who finished with five saves.
Shoaff, Perkins and junior Natalia Ariza were named to the All-Tournament team. This match concluded the 2012 campaign for the Lady Govs, and the careers of six seniors: Perkins, Jazzmine Chandler, Sara Kluttz, Jocelyn Murdoch, Renny Robinson and Stephanie Weider.
“These seniors were the foundation of our program,” Guth said. “It’s going to be hard work to get back to this level but we have a lot of players coming back who will be motivated to get us back here next season.”