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Wayne Cavadi | | December 3, 2016

DIII: Washington St. Louis wins national championship

2016 DIII Women's Soccer: Championship Recap

SALEM, VA. -- Four teams entered Donald J. Kerr Stadium on Friday, but only one left with the trophy. After two nights of tightly and well played soccer, Washington-St. Louis is your DIII women's soccer national champion.

The weekend started with two thrilling semifinals games on Friday evening. 90 minutes wasn't enough for No. 6-ranked Messiah and No. 11-ranked UChicago to decide a winner, so they went to overtime. Just under four minutes into the first overtime, Messiah's freshman forward Brooke Firestone found senior Erin Sollenberger on a perfectly executed one-time cross. The Falcons were heading back to the finals for the seventh time in ten years.

Washington-St. Louis and semifinals "rookie" Brandeis highlighted the nightcap. The Bears senior forward Katie Chandler proved too much for the Judges to handle as she scored both goals in the Bears 2-1 victory. It was Chandler's 11th and 12th goal of the season, and her seventh game-winner of the year.

Saturday saw a rematch of the 2009 National Championship match. Messiah rose victorious 1-0 in that match, part of six consecutive year run in the finals. Wash U, however, was also the defending national runners up, losing to Williams 1-0 last season. These were no strangers to championship game play.

It showed. After a scoreless first half, Wash U started the scoring with a blast from freshman Taylor Cohen. In the waning minutes of the second half, Erin Sollenberger briefly played the hero again for Messiah, scoring the equalizer on a deflected DJ Cole shot. For Messiah, they would be heading to their second overtime match in as many days.

Two overtimes wouldn't be enough. It went to penalty kicks, where Washington-St. Louis would rise victorious 5-4 on junior Megan Wolf's final penalty kick for the Bears. After falling one goal short twice before, WashU finally captured their elusive national championship.

Messiah College Falcons (22-2 overall, 8-0 MAC Commonwealth)

  • National Rankings: #6 NSCAA / #5
  • 2016 NCAA Results:
    • 1st Round: 4-0 win versus College of Staten Island
    • 2nd Round: 2-0 win versus Montclair State University
    • 3rd Round: 3-0 win versus Middlebury College
    • Quarterfinal: 4-1 win versus Williams College
  • Tournament History:
    • 17 NCAA appearances
    • 17 Sweet 16s
    • 12 Final Fours
    • 5 National Titles (2005, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012)
  • Head Coach: Scott Frey (361-19-20, 17 years at Messiah)
  • Players:
    • Marisa Weaver (Forward, Sr.) – 25 G, 7 A, 1st Team All-Region, MAC Offensive MVP
    • DJ Cole (Defense, So.) – 0 G, 3 A, 1st Team All-Region, MAC Defensive MVP
    • Kayla Deckert (Defense, Sr.) – 1 G, 2 A, 1st Team All-Region, 1st Team All-MAC
  • Statistics: 76 goals scored (3.30 per game) / 8 goals allowed (0.35 per game) / 16 shutouts
  • Previous Results versus Final Four opponents:
    • W 4-1 versus Messiah (2008 NCAA Round of 16)
    • T 1-1 versus Washington-St. Louis (2015 NCAA Semifinal), WashU advances on penalty kicks
    • Messiah and Brandeis have not played each other

Washington University-St. Louis Bears (18-2-3 overall, 5-1-1 UAA)

  • National Rankings: #8 NSCAA / #10
  • 2016 NCAA Results:
    • 1st Round: 3-0 win versus Knox College
    • 2nd Round: 3-0 win versus Luther College
    • 3rd Round: T 0-0 versus Hardin-Simmons University, advances on penalty kicks 2-1
    • Quarterfinals: 1-0 win at Trinity University Texas
  • Tournament History:
    • 16 NCAA appearances
    • 12 Sweet 16s
    • 4 Final Fours (1997, 2009, 2015, 2016)
    • 2 National Runner-ups (2009, 2015)
  • Head Coach: Jim Conlon (150-33-15, 9 years at WashU)
  • Players:
    • Katie Chandler (Forward, Sr.) – 10 G, 4 A, 1st Team All-Region, 1st Team All-UAA
    • Lizzy Crist (Goalkeeper, Sr.) – 17-1-2, 0.21 GAA, 13 SHO, 1st Team All-Region, 1st Team All-UAA
    • Maggie Crist (Midfield, So.) – 1 G, 0 A, 1st Team All-Region, 1st Team All-UAA
  • Statistics: 56 goals scored (2.55 per game) / 6 goals allowed (0.27 per game) / 18 shutouts
  • Previous Results versus Final Four opponents:
    • W 2-0 versus Brandeis (2016)
    • W 1-0 (OT) versus UChicago (2016)
    • T 1-1 versus Messiah (2015 NCAA Semifinal), WashU advances on penalty kicks