Nov. 6, 2009
CARY, N.C. – For the fifth time in school history, Florida State (16-3-1) is headed to the ACC Championship final. The third-ranked Seminoles earned the right to play for the conference title after recording a 2-0 victory over Virginia Tech (14-7-0) Friday evening in the first semifinal game of the 22nd ACC Women’s Soccer Championship at WakeMed Park.
The Seminoles were the beneficiary of two second half goals for the second game in a row and will advance to play the winner of the second semifinal game featuring North Carolina and Boston College on Sunday, November 8 at 2:00 p.m.
“It was a hard fought game,” said head coach Mark Krikorian. “I thought our kids played hard and created some good chances through the flow of play. Virginia Tech was hard to break down and gave us all that we could handle this evening.”
Redshirt sophomore Jessica Price had a hand in both goals on Friday evening registering a goal and an assist including her team leading fifth game-winner in the 67th minute of play to break a scoreless tie. It marked her eighth multi-point performance of the season.
“It was nice, definitely a complete team effort tonight by our entire team,” said Price on the team advancing to the championship final. “It was a really great win for us tonight.”
“Anytime you are in a one-goal game with any of these top 25 teams, they are not just going to let you win the game,” added Krikorian. “Each team is going to put there best effort forth, so you know it is coming especially with (Jillian) Johnson’s throw-in which is a heck of a weapon for them.”
Price scored the game’s first goal putting away a rebound from five yards out off an initial shot from down on the end line from Marissa Kazbour. Kazbour fired a shot from close range that Virginia Tech keeper Kristin Carden got a hand on for the save but was unable to control the ball. Price collected the rebound and fired the ball into the back of the net for her 12th goal of the season. Kazbour was credited with an assist on the play.
“Kaz served a ball in and the goalkeeper tipped with her hands,” added Price. “I shot it on frame and it went in.
In the 78th minute, the Hokies threatened with a series of shots including a long distance shot from Robin Chidester that ricocheted off the crossbar. Kelly Cohneeney ran down the loose ball and sent a shot on frame that was blocked by a Seminole defender.
Off a Virginia Tech throw-in, Jennifer Harvey registered a header in the 86th minute but Seminole defender Tiana Brockway blocked the shot and booted the ball out of harms way.
Amanda DaCosta sealed the victory for the Seminoles scoring a late goal in the 89th minute to give FSU a two-goal advantage. Casey Short sent a pass down the right side to Price, who beat a Hokie defender toward the end line. The Seminole forward sent a beautiful pass back towards the top of the 18-yard box where DaCosta took a dribble to her left and sent a blast into the upper left corner for her third goal of the season. Tiffany McCarty caused a little confusion on the play as she deked the Hokie defense making a strong run into the box. McCarty looked as though she would fire a shot on frame but she leapt over the ball leaving it for DaCosta.
“I thought the ball from Casey Short was outstanding,” added Krikorian. “Jess is a handful; she has been all season long. She continues to create scoring chances. She took her chances well this evening and created a great goal there at the end.”
“That was a great play,” explained DaCosta. “Tiff read it really well. It was a good combination and a great goal.”
Kimmy Diaz, who entered the game in the second half and played all 45 minutes, registered a pair of saves to pick up her first career victory in goal.
Both teams were unable to get much going in terms of offensive production in the first half as the Seminoles and Hokies registered four shots a piece. The best scoring chance for Florida State came in the 40th minute as Price sent a header on goal from eight yards out off a cross from the right wing by Susanna Zorn.
Erin McNulty played all 45 minutes in the first half making one save.
The Seminoles recorded their second shutout of the tournament and ninth of the season. Virginia Tech finished the game with the advantage in both shots (13-10) and corner kicks (4-1).
“We are definitely excited to be playing in the championship game,” explained Price. “We are hungry and really want to win.”
FSU will look for its first ACC title on Sunday. The Seminoles last played for the conference crown back in 2007 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., when the Garnet and Gold fell 1-0 to the Tar Heels. Three of the five championship appearances for the Seminoles have come in Cary.