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APSU Soccer’s Ashley Whittaker scores goal in overtime to give Govs 4-3 victory over Jacksonville State

 

APSU Soccer - Austin Peay State UniversityClarksville, TN – After a scoreless first 45 minutes, Austin Peay State University (APSU) soccer and Jacksonville State erupted for three goals apiece in the second half to force overtime, in the 103rd minute of double overtime, freshman Isabel Petre found Ashley Whittaker streaking down the sideline and Whittaker beat the Gamecock’s goalkeeper to secure a 4-3 win for the Governors, Tuesday, at Morgan Brothers Soccer Field.

Austin Peay State University soccer senior Ashley Whittaker scores in double overtime to defeat Jacksonville State, 4-3. (APSU Sports Information)

Austin Peay State University soccer senior Ashley Whittaker scores in double overtime to defeat Jacksonville State, 4-3. (APSU Sports Information)

Jacksonville State (0-3-0) tested Austin Peay (1-2-0) early, putting their first three shot attempts on goal, but the Gamecocks were unable to best APSU Govs goalkeeper Peyton Powell in the first half.

Powell made three saves to keep a clean sheet in the first half, but Jacksonville State keeper Aneesa O’Brien also made a pair of first-half saves to keep the Governors off the boards in the first frame.

After the quiet first half, things picked up in a hurry in the second 45 minutes, with Whittaker finding Petre for her career’s first goal in the 56th minute. But the Gamecocks had an answer and one more, with Cynthia Bagozzi scoring in the 66th minute to tie the match and Kylie Wells scoring in the 69th minute to give Jacksonville State a 2-1 advantage.

However the Governors didn’t wait long to erase the Jacksonville State lead, as Tori Case found fellow freshman Hannah Wilson, who beat the Gamecock’s keeper for her career’s first goal in the 74th minute. Wilson’s goal made her the third Austin Peay State University freshman to score her career’s first goal in the past two games, joining Case who scored at SIU Edwardsville, March 5th, and Petre earlier in the contest.

With the score tied at two, the Governors retook the lead when Claire Larose picked up her season’s first point by finding Delanie McKeon, who found the back of the net to give Austin Peay a 3-2 lead in the 80th minute. But Jacksonville State was able to tie the match on a Briana Eads goal in the 87th minute, sending the Governors and Gamecocks to overtime for the second-straight meeting.

The first overtime was uneventful, with neither team taking a shot in the ten-minute period. In the second overtime, Jacksonville State got things started when Ida Cedarburg fired a long shot just over the crossbar in the 101st minute.

Then it was Austin Peay State University’s turn to go on the attack in double overtime, and the Governors found an advantage in transition, with Petre finding a wide-open Whittaker streaking down the sideline. With the Gamecock’s keeper at the near post, Whittaker beat her to the middle of the net in the 103rd minute for the walk-off winner. The game-winning tally was the third career goal for Whittaker and marked the second time in the contest the Governors had used the Petre-Whittaker connection to find the back of the net.

 


Quotably

Ashley Whittaker

On the game-winning goal
“I was just running out wide and looking for a cross coming in, but Delanie hit Ibby with a through ball and then Ibby found me real quick, and I just drove. I had actually been working on that angle in practice all week with Tracy [Hoza]. I had been struggling with taking that angle from the near post and trying to slot it behind the keeper from that awkward angle on the right side, but it paid off I guess, because I finished it. It felt really awesome to win the game, because we needed a win.”

On the Govs second-half offense
“We had been in the position before where we weren’t scoring, so I think we were all tired of just not scoring and we just wanted to come out and put the ball in the back of the net. It had been coming, we have been getting chance after chance after chance, so it was about time that we put one in the back of the net. And shout out to the freshman, two of them scoring their first goals, that is amazing. I am just really proud of everyone.

APSU Coach Naomi Kolarova

On today’s game
“I think we took a while to get into the flow of the game. We knew the style of play they were going to play. They were going to knock the ball around their defense and play the long ball in, and we did not want to high press that and get opened up through the middle. So we played low pressure, sat back, and focused on winning those long balls. I think they created a few opportunities on our defense with that play in the first half, and we tried to tidy it up in the second half and win those long balls in the air and then build from the back and play out of there.”

On the Govs offense
“Credit to the girls who scored, we had two freshmen out there that scored goals, which is awesome. I am super excited for those kids to build their confidence and put the ball in the back of the net when they had the opportunity, I think that’s good for our team. We don’t have an out-and-out goal scorer and I don’t think we have for a while. That shows because goals come from all over the field with this group, and that is exciting, because it means everybody is somewhat dangerous in front of the net. Obviously we miss our fair share too, but I was really happy that a couple of those kids got to put them in the back net today.”

 


Box Score

Jacksonville State 3, Austin Peay 4

  1 2 OT 1 OT 2 F
Jacksonville State 0 3 0 0 3
Austin Peay 0 3 0 1 4

Next Up For APSU Soccer

The Austin Peay State University soccer team will kick off a season-long two-match road trip when they travel to Southeast Missouri for a 6:00pm, Friday match at Houck Field House in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. The Govs will then make the short trip north when they travel to Murray State for a 1:00pm, March 16th showdown with the Racers. APSU will return home to Morgan Brothers Soccer Field when it hosts Eastern Kentucky for a 2:00pm, March 19th match.

In the time of COVID-19, there is always a chance that a match will be postponed or not come to fruition. For news, scheduling changes, and match-time updates, be sure to check back at LetsGoPeay.com or follow the APSU Governors soccer Twitter account (@AustinPeaySOCR).


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