CHICOPEE, Mass. - In a match up of the top two seeds in the New England Collegiate Conference, Elms College defeated Lesley University in the fifth round of penalty kicks to take the inaugural NECC Women's Soccer Championship. The two teams tied at 1-1 through regulation and two overtimes, but the Blazers would prevail 4-3 in the shootout.
Lesley concluded the 2008 season with their most successful record in program history at 16-3-2. Elms finishes at 10-7-1 after going 8-0 in conference en route to the NECC regular season title.
In the 55th minute of the match, Jenna Fralick (Woburn, Mass.) gave the Lynx a 1-0 lead with her 10th goal of the year after powering a shot past Blazers keeper Kelly Callahan (Monson, Mass.).
The Blazers responded in the 73rd minute as freshman forward Jen Killion (Cambridge, Mass.) eluded two defenders and took a point-blank shot at Lynx goalie Hailee Lowe (Hamilton, Mass.). Lowe made a spectacular save that deflected back to Killion who finished the rebound just inside the far post to tie the match.
Through regulation and two 10-minute overtimes, the two goalies were sensational as Callahan tallied nine saves and Lowe turned away four shots.
In the first round of the shootout, Lowe stopped Alicia Bobbie (Higganum, Conn.) and Lynx forward Jodi Fralick (Woburn, Mass.) converted on her penalty kick attempt to give Lesley a 1-0 lead.
The two teams exchanged goals over the next two rounds as Lesley maintained the one-goal advantage.
The fourth round saw Shannon Donnelly (Florence, Mass.) find the back of the net for Elms to tie up the shootout going into the fifth round.
In the fifth round, Serina Percoski (Westfield, Mass.) scored what would be the game-winning goal as Callahan would save Tracy Potter's (Acton, Mass.) shot to secure the championship for Elms.
For their efforts, Cathryn Folkestad (Ipswich, Mass.), Lani Cabral-Pini (Wilmington, Mass.), Jodi Fralick, and Jenna Fralick received All-Tournament Team honors.
To learn more about the Lesley University women's soccer team, please visit their website.
Sports Information Director