Illinois advances past Missouri in shootout, moves to NCAA Round 2
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Illinois moved on to the second round of the NCAA tournament after advancing 3-0 on a penalty kick shootout against the Missouri Tigers. The Illini and Mizzou tied at one after 110 minutes of play, which saw Allie Osoba score the lone goal for Illinois with Shayla Mutz credited with the assist. Taylore Peterson, Kassidy Brown and Aliina Weykamp converted successful PK's along with two huge saves from Steph Panozzo.
"A lot of credit to Missouri for they put us under a lot of pressure and with the style they play, I told our kids that we would have to weather the storm, and we certainly did," Illinois head coach Janet Rayfield said. "This Illinois team is special, and tonight we fought hard and defended well to beat a good Missouri team."
Senior Niki Read got the offense rolling, recording three near misses in the first 16 minutes, but it was junior Allie Osoba who got the Illini on the board in the 19th-minute.
Shayla Mutz collected and dribbled the ball at the top of Mizzou's 18-yard box. Mutz dished a pass to the right side of the box, where the ball found Osoba. Osoba then delivered a low shot that found the left corner of the net. The strike was Osoba's third goal on the year and she has now scored in back-to-back games.
Illinois goalkeeper Steph Panozzo came off her line several times to grab the ball out of the air on Mizzou breakaways. Missouri's Kelsey Mulcahy struck a low liner to the right corner and Panozzo dived and tipped the ball out of her box.
The Tigers tied the game in the 53rd-minute. Danielle Nottingham collected a pass in the middle of the field 22 yards out from Illinois' goal and then released a shot that flew to the upper right 90 of the goal.
In the 70th-minute, Mizzou hit back-to-back shots from far out that hit the right post both times.
Illinois would get their chances to go ahead late in the game, as well. DiBernardo produced a shot with just under 10 minutes to play inside the Missouri box that was saved by the keeper. Moments later, Nicole Breece beat a Tiger defender for a shot that went just wide.
After a scoreless first overtime, the action picked up. Panozzo made a diving save to stop a Mizzou cross in the opening minute. Moments later, it was the Illini's turn as DiBernardo's pass sent Weykamp on a breakaway. With a Tiger giving chase to apply pressure from behind, Weykamp's shot just missed the goal.
Dominique Richardson connected with a header deep in the Illinois box off of a Mizzou corner kick. The ball sailed to the far post, but freshman Amy Feher was positioned well to block the shot and clear the ball.
The match turned into a deja vu moment for Coach Rayfield as it headed into a PK shootout. The last time these two squads battled, it was the second round of the NCAA tournament in 2008, where Illinois advanced with a 4-3 PK win after ending regulation in a one score tie.
Steph Panozzo took over the game, blocking the first two shots from Mizzou with diving saves. Taylore Peterson and Kassidy Brown stepped up for the Orange and Blue with successful shots from both kickers. Missouri's third kicker opened the door for Illinois after blasting her shot off the crossbar. Aliina Weykamp sent the Illini into the second round of the tournament with a successful PK.
Missouri outshot Illinois 28-19 and had eight shots on goal compared to the Illini's seven. The Tigers also enjoyed a 9-3 corner kick advantage in the contest. Panozzo finished with seven saves to bring her season total to 104, which gives her sole possession of second place in Illinois history for most saves in a season, seven behind leader and current assistant coach Leisha Alcia.