COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Vanderbilt Commodores (13-6-2) best season in over a decade will continue on next week after they shocked No. 4 seed Ohio State (15-5-1) 2-1 Friday night in Columbus. The Dores earned their first NCAA Tournament win since 1998 and advance to the second round for the fifth time in school history.
Head coach Darren Ambrose was thrilled with his team’s resolve in their come-from-behind win on the road.
“I am unbelievably proud of this group,” said Ambrose. “There is something special about them. There is no quit in them, they believe and it has all come together for them. I am ecstatic for them.”
In the first half, neither team got much going for the first 25 minutes as they tried to gain possession and get a feel for the game.
The Commodores did not have many offensive opportunities because they were playing into the wind during the first half. They were able to limit Ohio State’s chances until the 30th minute.
The Buckeyes strung a few passes together and Maddy Lowe got the ball just outside box and sent a through ball to Sarah Roberts. Roberts took one touch and fired a shot towards the right post for the opening goal of the match.
Ohio State had a few more chances over the final fifteen minutes but nothing came of them and they took a 1-0 lead into the half.
In the second half, the Commodores looked to take advantage of the wind and find the equalizer.
In the 62nd minute, the Commodores would break through with the equalizer.
Leila Azari made a great play on the end line to keep the ball in play and sent a cross towards the near post. Lydia Simmons flicked a header back towards the middle of the box where Nia Dorsey got to the ball and volleyed it home to tie the match.
Then as the second half began to wind down, the match looked destined for extra time until the Commodores got a late corner kick with less than two minutes remaining.
Leila Azari got subbed in and went directly over to take the corner for the Dores. Her kick sailed high into the box and Stephanie Amack beat her defender to the ball, headed it towards the near post and past the keeper for the go-ahead goal.
With just over a minute to play, Ohio State tried to push forward to tie the match but to no avail and the Commodores would come away with the 2-1 upset win.
It was just the second game all season the Buckeyes had given up more than one goal and was the first time they lost after scoring the opening goal. Coming into tonight’s match, Ohio State was 15-0 when scoring first.