ST. LOUIS -- Washington (Mo.) came from behind for the second night in a row as the Bears posted a 3-1 win against Calvin in the second round of the 2013 NCAA Division III Championship on Saturday night at Francis Field.
“We did a very good job of getting the ball on the ground and moving it around,” said sixth-year head coach Jim Conlon, who is one win shy of 100 in his Washington career. “Calvin is a solid team and played us hard for 90 minutes.”
Washington improved its overall record to 19-1 with the victory, tying the school record for most wins in school history. The Bears also won 19 games a year ago en route to a quarterfinal appearance. Calvin ends its season with a 19-3-2 record.
Washington, which allowed four goals in 18 regular-season games, fell behind as Paige Capel’s shot slipped through the hands of WUSTL goalkeeper Amy French just 2:04 into the game. The goal for Capel was her team-leading 16th of the year.
The Bears answered right back in the 10th minute on a nice sequence by Washington that left junior Anna Zambricki open in the box for her ninth goal of the season. Senior Jessica Johnson and sophomore Olivia Lillegraven were credited with assists on the play after a pair of flicks on headers.
Washington nearly took the lead with just more a minute to go in the half after sophomore Anna Sippel’s header off a corner kick from freshman Lexie Sprague was deflected just over the bar by Calvin goalkeeper Ashton Hearn. Hearn made five saves in the first half, as Washington outshot Calvin 10-2 in the opening half. The Bears also had a 7-0 advantage in corner kicks.
The Bears jumped ahead for good at 48:21 after Washington took advantage of a foul by Calvin near midfield. Senior Kate Doyle sent the free kick into the box that was flicked by senior Lauren Steimle to junior Kaylin Balley for the goal. Balley headed the ball past Hearn for her fourth goal of the season.
“This weekend was a test for us, and we had to come from behind in both games,” Balley said. “This was a testament to our hard work. We did not let up the high pressure, even when playing from behind.”
Junior Lillie Toaspern added the insurance goal for Washington at 84:25 after taking a pass from Johnson and splitting two defenders before firing a shot inside the box. The goal for Toaspern was her ninth of the season and tied her with senior Becky Berels for the team lead with 26 points. The Bears have six players with 20 or more points.
French made two saves in goal, and improved to 18-1. The 18 wins in a single season are the second most by a goalkeeper. Washington outshot Calvin 25-3 for the game, including 15-1 in the second half. The Bears also had a 10-2 advantage in corner kicks.
Washington advances to sectional play for the third consecutive season and for the 10th time in school history. The Bears take on the winner of the Cal Lutheran Regional next Saturday at a site to be determined. The sectional host will be announced Monday.