WHEATON, Ill. -- Wheaton (Ill.) rallied to earn a 3-2 victory against Loras on Saturday afternoon in the second round of the NCAA tournament. Wheaton's win advances the Thunder to the sectional semifinal round of the tournament next week at a yet-to-be-determined site. Wheaton improves to 19-1-2 on the year, while Loras ends the season at 18-4-1.
Loras took an early 1-0 lead in the match when the Duhawks' Lynn DeVriese scored from the left side of the box on a Ailish Rispin assist in the 23rd minute. Wheaton tied the match at 1-1 in the 30th minute on a goal by Bailey Wysocki. Thunder sophomore Sydney Sharkey delivered a cross from the far left side of the goal box to Wysocki at the lower right corner to tie the match. Thunder sophomore Ally Witt gave Wheaton a 2-1 lead with her eighth goal of the season in the 42nd minute. A long cross by Leah DeMoss found sophomore Annie Wooldridge who knocked the ball to Witt. Witt put the ball into the opposite corner of the net to give the hosts their first lead of the match and a 2-1 halftime lead. Wheaton out-shot the Duhawks 10-5 in the first half.
Wheaton increased its lead in the 76th minute when a Val Lelle corner kick was headed into the net by Thunder freshman Sarah Frey to give the hosts a 3-1 advantage. Loras put pressure on Wheaton throughout the second half and kept pressing the Thunder. It paid off for the Duhawks in the 87th minute when Danielle Vujovic scored her 11th goal of the year to cut Wheaton's lead to 3-2. The Thunder held on for the win despite constant pressure from Loras attackers. Each team attempted nine shots in the second half.
Wheaton goalkeeper Kelsey Graham made five saves and she allowed two goals in 90 minutes of work in the Thunder net. Hannah Wilson started the match in net for Loras, with six saves and two goals allowed in 75 minutes. Kathryn Hermanas played 15 minutes in the goal, with one save and one goal allowed. Wheaton was awarded 10 corner kicks in the match and Loras attempted one.