No. 12 William Smith claims sixth consecutive Liberty League title
GENEVA, N.Y. -- William Smith won its sixth consecutive Liberty League Tournament Championship with a 3-2 victory against Union in the championship match on Saturday. The Herons, who are ranked No. 12 in the nation, improve to 12-2-3 overall.
The Dutchwomen are ranked No. 25 in the country, and fall to 15-3-0 overall.
The Herons did not take long to score. Just 58 seconds in, sophomore Caitlyn Mitchell sent a cross from the left side of the field to find senior Renee Jensen in front of the cage. Jensen settled the ball and fired to give William Smith the early 1-0 lead.
The Dutchwomen earned a free kick from 10 yards outside of the box in the 28th minute. Whitney Bickford knocked down the kick and pushed a pass to Jennifer Mansfield, who sent a shot into the left side of the goal to tie things at one.
In the 42nd minute, William Smith's Jensen earned a corner kick. First-year Mason O'Brien collected the cross and sent a pass to Zoe Jackson Gibson. She notched her first goal of the year from 10 yards out to give the Herons a 2-1 advantage.
Just 34 seconds after the Herons took back the lead, William Smith was called for a hand ball in the box, resulting in a penalty kick for Union. Jennifer Mansfield took the PK for the Dutchwomen and tied things up at two with a shot into the top left corner of the goal.
Senior Whitney Frary, the tournament MVP, netted the game-winner for William Smith in the 76th minute. Frary was fouled just outside of the box, and was awarded a free kick. Frary lined up and blasted the free kick through the crowd in front of the goal and into the back of the net to secure the title as the Herons held off the Dutchwomen for the remainder of the game.
Junior goalie Chelsea Dunay finished with six saves in all 90 minutes for William Smith. Kayla Marti also stopped six shots for Union. The Herons finished with a 24-12 advantage in shots. Each team earned six corners.
In addition to the championship, William Smith earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championship. The complete field will be announced on Monday, Nov. 5 at 1:30 p.m. ET.