November 23, 2012
NO MORE FIGHT
Irish eliminated by Florida State
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.– Tiffany McCarty’s goal in the 53rd minute was all top-seeded Florida State needed Friday night as the Seminoles defeated Notre Dame, 1-0, in front of a packed crowd of 2,019 inside the Seminole Soccer Complex.
McCarty’s goal started with a long throw-in by FSU’s Jessica Price on the right touch line, with Dagny Brynjarsdottir racing towards the throw and flicking a header from the right side of the penalty area into the heart of the box. McCarty found space eight yards out and was able to poke a shot back across the face of goal and inside the right post.
With the win, FSU (20-3-0) advances to the College Cup for the second year in a row and sixth time in school history. The Seminoles will face Penn State, who defeated Duke 1-0, in one semifinal on Friday, November 30 in San Diego, Calif. Notre Dame ends its season at 16-6-2.
Freshman goalkeeper Elyse Hight registered four saves in the Fighting Irish net, while FSU goalkeeper Kelsey Wys stopped all six shots she faced.
“I couldn’t more proud of the effort shown by this group of players, not just tonight, but throughout the season,” Notre Dame head coach Randy Waldrum said. “I thought we played fantastic soccer in the second half tonight, some of our best possession of the season, but we just weren’t able to get that tying goal. I think the future is extremely bright for this team and I’m excited about what lies ahead for us.”
Florida State had much of the run of play in the first half, keeping Hight and the Fighting Irish defense on their toes, but the visitors were more than equal to the task. In the 19th minute, off an FSU corner kick, McCarty collected a pass in the goal mouth, 10 yards out, but Hight sprang off her line and blocked the shot.
First-half substitute Carson Pickett had a pair of challenging looks for the Seminoles, curling a tight-angle shot from the left side in the 32nd minute that whistled untouched through the six-yard box, and then drilling a low shot from the top left of the box that Hight dove to push wide of the left post in the 38th minute.
Notre Dame nearly grabbed a stunning goal in the 44th minuute, as sophomore defender Taylor Schneide alertly stepped into the passing lane on the right k as FSU attempted to clear the ball upfield. Schneider then pushed into the attacking third before cracking a low shot that deflected slightly off a Seminole defender and was ticketed for the far left post. Wys initially was leaning towards her left , but managed to regain her footing enough to get back and make a head-long dive to push the shot wide of the left post .
In the 60th minute, senior defender Jazmin Hall collected the ball near the midfield stripe and made a weaving run through the center of the pitch before playing wide for freshman forward Anna Maria Gilbertson, but the rookie’s 15-yard shot went right into Wys’ waiting arms.
In the 72nd minute, Gilbertson again found space on a run down the right flank, driving a sharp cross to the top of the penalty area. Freshman forward Cari Roccaro was able to get her head on it, but the shot was wide of the right post.
McCarty nearly doubled Florida State’s lead in the 82nd minute, grabbing a loose ball near the top of the box and cracking a rising shot that slammed hard off the crossbar before being cleared out by the Fighting Irish defense. Three minutes later, FSU’s Kassey Kallman tried a back-post header off a corner kick, but Hight slid over and made the stop on the eight-yard shot.
Notre Dame had one final offensive flurry that yielded a pair of corner kicks, but neither attempts from the flag paid off, with the best chance being a header from freshman defender Katie Naughton that drifted wide right with 90 seconds remaining.