Nov. 20, 2009

Courtesy of West Florida Athletics

Senior goalkeeper Courtney Jones (Panama City, Fla./Bay HS) posted five saves, including one spectacular second half save on a header in the penalty area, to help the No. 1 West Florida women’s soccer team hold on for a 1-0 win over No. 9 Rollins in the NCAA Tournament Third Round game at Carson-Newman on Friday.  With the win, UWF will advance to Sunday’s NCAA Quarterfinal match against the winner of Friday’s Carson-Newman vs. Columbus State game.

Senior midfielder Jodi Galucci’s (Stuart, Fla./South Fork HS) goal in the eighth minute turned out to be the game-winner, as Rollins held the record-setting West Florida attack to a season-low one goal.  UWF improved to 21-0-0 with the win, while Rollins finishes the season at 16-2-2.  The only two losses for Rollins in 2009 were to West Florida, and the Tars finished the same way in 2008.

“"We're very excited to be going to the final eight,” said Head Coach Joe Bartlinski.  “All the credit goes to Rollins; they've only lost to one team in the last two years.  They're disciplined and they work hard, and all credit goes to them for a hard fought battle."

The only goal of the game started with junior Shakira Duncan (Kingston, Jamaica/Darton College) making a run down the left sideline in the eighth minute.  She cut inside and found senior Shaneka Gordon (Old Harbour, Jamaica/Community College of Baltimore), and Gordon deflected the ball to Galucci open on the right.  Galucci buried the shot inside the far post, giving West Florida all it would need in the victory.

"I saw Shakira (Duncan) take off on the left so I took off and tried to keep up,” said Galucci.  “The cross came on the outside and I was ready.  The last couple of weeks we've been working on the outside midfielders working on being in position on the far post, and that's what happened today."

Rollins gave the UWF defense all it could handle, as the Argonauts gave up 11 shots, five of which were on goal.  UWF attempted 15 shots, putting 10 on frame.  Rollins goalkeeper Michelle Dillingham made nine saves for the Tars, while Jones saved five for UWF.

The Tars’ best chance for an equalizer came in the 79th minute.  Rollins pushed the ball forward, and a loose ball fell to midfielder Jessica Mooney on the left side.  Mooney hit the ball into the middle of the box, where a Rollins teammate headed the ball on frame, forcing Jones to make the spectacular save and punch the ball over the crossbar.

“The team has worked so hard this year, and I had to come through for this team,” said Jones.  “I had to step up like they've done all year.”

"That save was unbelievable, it was special,” explained Coach Bartlinski.  “She faces some pretty good strikers in practice, some pretty prolific goal scorers.  She faces that every day in practice, so she was ready."

Sunday’s quarterfinal match is scheduled for a 1:00 p.m. ET kickoff from McCown Field on the campus of Carson-Newman.  Fans can follow all of the action live on