Nov. 13, 2004
Gainesville, FL – The 17th-ranked Florida Seminoles have still never lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament but for the first time ever, the Tribe did not advance to the second round. The Seminoles played 110 minutes of scoreless soccer with Boston College Friday night before falling in a PK shootout for the second time in just over a week. The Tribe finishes the season 12-5-3 beating the best record for fewest losses ever in a season by two.
“I would like to congratulate coach Foley and Boston College on a good game and advancing to the next round,” said Florida State head coach Patrick Baker. “I thought we played some good soccer and some bad soccer. Unfortunately, tonight was no different than in the ACC Tournament. We don’t advance on PKs.”
Florida State and BC played 110 minutes of very even soccer with both teams having chances to score despite combining for just 22 shots in 110 minutes of play. The only statistical advantage where one team held a distinct advantage was in corner kicks where FSU took 10 compared to just two for the Eagles.
The best chances for the Seminoles came when they had two sure goals cleared off the line by BC defenders after beating starting keeper Kate Taylor. The Eagles came close as well as they had a great opportunity in the second half when BC got in behind the FSU defense but saw their shot bounce off the back post and the follow up put over the crossbar.
With neither team able to break the deadlock through two ten minute overtimes, where BC out shot FSU 4-1, the game was officially a tie and moved into a penalty kick shootout to determine which team would advance into the second round. Last week the Tribe was eliminated from the ACC quarterfinals by Clemson in a shootout. It was déjà vu all over again for FSU Friday night as the Tribe could not find the back of the net missing on three of their four opportunities.
“It’s tough,” said Baker. “As the second half wore on, you knew that one goal was going to win it. We had our chances and they had their chances. Unfortunately, when a game goes to PKs it has nothing to do with soccer other than a one (versus) one situation. We work on it. We wanted the five people we had go against Clemson go again tonight. For some reason we just couldn’t hit them.”
This was the first time in five tries that FSU has not advanced in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament and it is the first time in three postseason visits to Gainesville where the Seminoles did not come away a winner. On the positive side, the Tribe ended the season with the best single season winning percentage in school history at .675. The Tribe was just the second team to shutout BC in the last 14 games and the clean sheet was a record tying ninth of the season for FSU and it gave FSU goalkeeper Joy McKenzie 13.5 shutouts in two years, which is a new career record for an FSU keeper.
“The record really is meaningless tonight when you see your career and your fellow senior’s careers come to an end,” said McKenzie. “One day I will look back on it and be proud of the accomplishment and all my teammates that are really responsible for it but not tonight. Tonight none of us feel like celebrating any individual accomplishments.”
After a steady rain drenched James G. Pressley field on the campus of the University of Florida the weather cleared for the night cap between FSU and BC but slippery field conditions seemed like they would be a factor early on. Both teams tried to skip balls along the wet turf in hopes of beating the defense and keeper and in the 28th minute FSU almost used a skipping pass to break on top. Defender Teresa Rivera played a low, driven ball forward. The new Brine ball skipped through a very solid BC defense and on to the foot of defender turner forward Kelly Rowland. She was in 1-v-1 with Taylor but a good side-on tackle by a recovering Eagle defender ended the chance.
In the 44th minute FSU had its first of two shots cleared off the line by the BC defense. The play started with a Libby Gianeskis corner kick being played to fellow freshman Holly Peltzer. She one timed a shot that beat Taylor but Heather Ferron was there to save it from going into the net.
Just nine minutes out of halftime. Senior Jez Ratliff almost had her record-breaking seventh goal of the year. Freshman Sage Sizemore played a ball to Rowland at the top of the 18. Her shot was blocked about 10 yards from goal but the ricochet went right to Ratliff on the far side of the box. The senior took one touch and had a great look but the defense closed in on her just before she was able to pull the trigger.
Another scramble inside the BC box almost resulted in the first goal of the match. The ball was played into the box where Taylor came out to pluck it out of midair. Rowland went up to challenge with a header and dislodged the ball from the BC keeper. After the ball was batted around in the box and Taylor was out of the play due to a dive that left her empty-handed, senior Camie Bybee pushed a shot towards the open goal. The senior could not get enough force behind the shot allowing Tara Luciani to clear it off the line before the ball went in.
In the 70th minute FSU had another great chance off a corner kick as the service was perfectly placed on Rowland’s head. The sophomore All-American candidate went to the back post but the BC defense was there again to clear it away.
In the 79th minute it was the Eagles turn to try and end the match. In what was the prettiest attack on goal of the night, BC combined down the right side to get Laina Ceddia in alone with McKenzie. The senior keeper charged to cut down the angle forcing Ceddia to go back post where she knocked her shot off the iron. Jenny Mauer picked up the rebound about 12 yards out and dead on with the net but her shot was fired high over the crossbar.
Neither team had a real shot at ending the game in the first OT period but the Seminoles did generate a couple of chances on goal in the final 10:00 of regulation. In the 103rd minute India Trotter played Julia Schnugg a ball at the top of the BC 18. Schnugg flicked a dangerous ball inside the box but Taylor was just quick enough off her line to beat the Tribe offense to the loose ball.
Then with five minutes left Rowland gave FSU one last chance to end the game with a golden goal. The sophomore made a great play inside the 18 on the left side to work herself into a position where she could pull the trigger on a shot, albeit one from a difficult angle. Rowland fired a shot with three defenders between her and the keeper. The ball passed through the legs of the first BC back and then ricocheted off the second defender catching Taylor completely off guard but her defense was there to clear the shot out of danger eventually sending the game to PKs.
Friday’s match was the last for six FSU seniors who went to four NCAA Tournaments, two ACC Championships, two Sweet 16’s and a College Cup. The group posted a 57-28-8 record and an all-time winning percentage of .656. That winning percentage is the best ever posted over a four-year stretch in school history.