Oct. 1, 2006
Tallahassee, FL – For just the second time this season the Seminoles played at home on a Sunday. Both games were played during the day, both saw record-setting attendances and in both FSU was trailing at halftime, but just like they did versus Portland the third-ranked Seminoles fought back form a 1-0 halftime deficit to win 2-1. Florida State (8-1-1, 2-1-1) needed a Mami Yamaguchi goal in the 86th minute to finally put away Virginia Tech (5-5-1, 1-3-0) as the Seminoles recorded their 24th all-time come-from-behind victory.
The Seminoles dominated the possession and statistics. FSU out shot Virginia Tech 21-3 and put nine shots on frame to just two for the Hokies. Florida State created numerous chances throughout the game but once again struggled to finish off their opportunities until late in the match.
“I thought we started out pretty good,” said FSU Head Coach Mark Krikorian. “We are still not good enough in the final third. I will tell you I thought this is the best soccer we have played. We were able to get a hold of the ball, create a lot of dangerous chances but the final pass still isn’t good enough. The goal we created to win the game came off the movement that you needed and a good individual effort by India (Trotter). Of course, Mami is a clutch player.”
Florida State fell behind 1-0 in a first half that saw Virginia Tech take just two shots compared to FSU’s 11 of which seven were on goal. Mauri Liberati converted an errant clearance in the 37th minute to stake the Hokies to a 1-0 lead. The Seminoles created nearly 10 dangerous chances in the first 45:00 but couldn’t find the key to end a scoreless streak that had reached 197:11 when the team went into the locker room down 1-0 at half.
“The first half we played the best soccer of the season and it was so much fun,” said Yamaguchi. “There were a lot of great combinations we just needed to finish. We had the confidence even though we were losing 1-0. In the second half we knew we just needed to play the same soccer. We just needed to finish the goal.”
“I thought in the first half we played with great composure,” said Krikorian. “I thought the whole half was good outside of their goal, which was significant. The second half we started out a little flat. I am not sure why that is. Then we regained our composure and started to play again. Once we spread them out, I thought it was pretty good.”
Florida State finally did get on the board and even the game but the goal came on a Selin Kuralay penalty kick not from the run of play. The goal was created by Katrin Schmidt’s dangerous run into the box. Kuralay nailed the PK for her sixth goal of the year ending the Seminole goal drought at 210:47 seconds.
“I just passed it by the defender, she kicked it a little bit and I knew I could get in more,” said Schmidt of the play. “She fouled me and I went down. I didn’t know if they would call the PK. I didn’t even know if I was inside or outside the box. I didn’t know where I was exactly.”
“They congested the game, especially when they were ahead 1-0 they compacted the game, which they should do,” said Krikorian. “We said before the game that we knew we would be successful if we had Becky Edwards and Katrin Schmidt in the attack a lot and they were in the attack a lot, particularly Katrin. She drew the penalty on the first goal. She is a heck of an attacking weapon. It is a luxury for us to have her and Becky in the backline knowing when they get forward they will be dangerous.”
The penalty kick sparked the record daytime crowd of 1,895, which was the third-largest crowd in school history. It also seemed to spark FSU, which put continual pressure on the Virginia Tech defense for the next 30 minutes.
“After Sel’s goal I thought we can win, we will win,” said Yamaguchi. “I was so sure.”
It looked as is FSU had won in the 84th minute. Edwards played a ball to Trotter at the top of the 18. The senior All-American touched the ball around the defender and ran onto the pass. The senior was all alone with Tech keeper Mallory Soldner on the right side. Trotter went backpost but missed by two yards wide of the frame.
“Oh gosh,” said Trotter of the missed opportunity. “It kind of hit off my shin guard. I didn’t place it as accurately as I wanted to.”
The missed chance seemed to spark Trotter who aggressively started the play that would secure the win for FSU. Trotter used her speed and strength to get around the corner on the right side. She sent a square ball along the top of the 18 where Holly Peltzer was waiting. The junior just got a piece of the pass and redirected it backwards to Yamaguchi. The sophomore struck the pass first time driving the ball low and inside the post.
“None of us really wanted to play for 20 more minutes after going to OT Thursday versus Virginia,” said Trotter. “We wanted to end the game. I made a play on the outside and saw Holly. I pulled back and tried to play her. She found Mami and Mami did nothing but finish it beautifully.”
“That was a fantastic finish,” said Krikorian. “I think Holly got a piece of it. The ball came across and was played off Holly. Give Mami credit for finishing it.”
Florida State returns to action on the road next week. The Seminoles will travel to Maryland Thursday and Boston College Sunday. It will be the team’s first-ever trip to Chestnut Hill. MA. Game Tracker will both be available for both games. For information on Game Tracker log on to the official website for Seminole athletics at Seminoles.com.