Florida State tops Samford
Cayman scores goal as Seminoles advance to second round
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida State (15-6-1) registered two second-half goals in defeating Samford (14-6-2) 2-0 Friday evening in the first round of the NCAA tournament. The Seminoles recorded a season-high 28 shots en route to running their current unbeaten streak to seven games (6-0-1).
"I tell you that was one heck of a first round match," head coach Mark Krikorian said. "I thought our kids played really well. They came out strong in the first half, had pretty good possession and pretty good attacking play, but credit to Samford for their organization, defending and making it very difficult for us to break them down.
FSU dominated possession from the start keeping the offensive pressure on the Bulldogs all night long. Despite out shooting Samford 12-1 in the first half, the Seminoles could not crack goalkeeper Alyssa Whitehead as the senior goalkeeper made six saves and benefited from a team save in the box in the 31st minute off a shot from Tori Huster to keep the game scoreless after the first 45 minutes.
"In the second half, I thought we came out again pretty hard and had good control of the ball," Krikorian added. "We had good opportunities and eventually we were fortunate enough to score."
The Seminoles finally found the back of the net in the 58th minute as Janice Cayman timed her run beautifully to score the game's first goal on a double passing combination from Tiffany McCarty and Jessica Price. McCarty dribbled down to the end line and fired a pass across the goal box where Price out jumped the 6-3 frame of Whitehead to redirect the ball to the far post. Cayman came sprinting in from the left side and put away the ball from close range to give FSU a 1-0 lead.
The goal by Cayman was her sixth of the season and first in five NCAA tournament games. The assist for Price was her team leading eighth of the season, while the assist for McCarty marked the eighth time in the last 10 games that the junior forward as registered at least one point in a game.
"It was a relief getting the first one," Cayman said. "Tiff made a really good run. She ran by her defenders and crossed the ball in. Jessica is an amazing athlete and she jumped higher than the goalie who is 6'3" and she made it easy for me to touch it in the goal."
Tiana Brockway sealed the deal in the 65th minute on an outstanding goal to give the Seminoles a 2-0 advantage. The junior defended weaved her way in and out of traffic down the middle of the field before freeing up enough space and firing a world class shot into the upper left corner of the net from about 17 yards out. The goal was Brockway's second of the season.
"Patience was the key and I'm not going to lie, I got frustrated at times especially when there's so much space and you have the ball for so long," Brockway said. "But it was very important to stay focused and do the little things like keep the ball."
The Seminole defensive unit of Brockway, Ines Jaurena, Kassey Kallman and Toni Pressley did not allow Samford a shot in the second half and held the Bulldogs without a shot on frame the entire match.
Kelsey Wys played all 90 minutes in goal to pick up her sixth shutout of the season. Whitehead had a season-high 10 saves against Florida State and set the Samford single-season saves record with 120 following Friday night's game.
McCarty finished with a game-high seven shots as five went on goal. A total of 12 Seminoles recorded at least one shot Friday night, while seven registered a shot on goal.
Florida State advanced out of the first round of the NCAA tournament for the seventh consecutive year while running their unbeaten streak in the first round to 12 games (11-0-1).