VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- For two teams who met as strangers, Skidmore and Salisbury produced a memorable result Friday.
Salisbury (17-3) prevailed 3-2 in overtime of the second NCAA Division III national semifinal, advancing to Sunday’s national championship game against Bowdoin.
The end came on freshman Yumi Kim’s penalty stroke at 10:35 into overtime. She beat Skidmore goalie Haley McDougall low on the left, with a ball that skittered off McDougall’s pads.
“I just did what I needed to do,” Kim said. “I just was so excited.”
“Every time I’ve asked her to do it, she’s gone out and scored some big goals,” Salisbury head coach Dawn Chamberlin said. “So she stepped up and did it.”
It was a heartbreaker for the Skidmore Thoroughbreds (19-4), who had matched second-seeded Salisbury goal for goal and stride for stride until that point.
“Obviously when a game goes into overtime, it’s a fabulous game, well-played on both sides,” Skidmore head coach Beth Hallenbeck said. “And I’m pleased with the way the team played to the last second and reflected Skidmore in a positive manner.”
Friday’s semifinal – played at the USA Field Hockey National Training Center – matched opposing styles.
"We’re an offensive-minded team so we like to get on the scoreboard first, so that’s usually a goal,” Hallenbeck said. “But we knew Salisbury was coming in with a solid defense, so it was a good juxtaposition of defense and offense.”
That’s how the scoring went, with Skidmore’s Dani DeGregory first on the board at 13:27 with an unassisted goal. Salisbury’s Courtney Jantzen followed, but not until near the end of the first half, with a goal at 33:46.
“We had little issues in the midfield today,” Chamberlin said. “We weren’t on our game. We were doing it more to ourselves than what they were doing. It took us all of the first half to settle in and that was way too long. In the second half, I thought we did some good things and controlled the game more, and, of course, we controlled the overtime.”
Skidmore struck again not long after halftime – Sam Skott’s goal at 377:58. Salisbury’s Emily Voshell tied the game at 50:15 on an unassisted play,
“I just feel like I’ve been in that position before and it’s just me and the goaltender and it hasn’t happened,” Voshell said. “And this time, it’s just ‘I’ve got to make this.’”
“It’s just a mark of what she’s been doing all year for us – stepping up and being a great leader,” Chamberlin said.
Then came overtime, and what transpired was the matchup between Salisbury’s King and Skidmore’s McDougall.
“We practice overtime every day,” Hallenbeck said. “So the idea is just to utilize the extra space that you have, so the speed is a factor – trying to earn corners and keep possession of the ball.”
Kim’s game winner turned out to be both opportunity and execution.
“We knew what the goalkeeper was going to do – go down and slide,” Chamberlin said. “And Yumi did exactly what she was told to do – pull the ball down and go around it.”
Even with the loss, Hallenbeck credited McDougall for being able to play an overtime period.
“I thought Haley was definitely our most valuable player today, and time and again, kept us in it,” Hallenbeck said.
“I’ve played my whole high school and college career for this moment, so I wanted to leave it all out on the field today,” McDougall said.