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FORT MYERS, Fla. - No. 2 Lipscomb returned to the ASUN Women's Soccer Championship Final with a pair of late goals as the Bisons defeated No. 3 Stetson in double overtime at FGCU's Soccer Complex. With only 56 seconds remaining before penalty kicks, ASUN Defensive Player of the Year Niamh Rawlins struck from just inside the penalty area on a loose ball following a corner kick.
The last-minute score marked the first goal of the season for Rawlins and only third in her four-year career. The Bisons improved to 12-4-2 to tie the program record for victories, which was set last season. Lipscomb found itself trailing with 85 minutes to play as the Hatters opened the scoring in the 71st minute.
Stetson's Riana Metzger combined with Hailey Williams one a give-and-go combo inside the penalty area as her quick touch slipped past ASUN Goalkeeper of the Year Anna Buhigas. The Chandler, Ariz. native finished the contest with three shots - two on goal - as she entered off the bench.
Lipscomb needed 15 minutes to even the contest as Ellen Lundy's header on an Emily Rogers' longball into the box found the back of the net with 4:04 remaining in regulation. The score marked the seventh of the season for Lundy and 26th of her career. A junior, Lundy moved into a tie with ASUN Freshman of the Year, Olivia Doak, for the team lead in goals.
The opening half belonged to the defenses as both teams could muster only one shot on goal. Stetson's Sarah Collins attempt in the ninth minute was saved by Buhigas, while Lipscomb's attempt from Ellen Lundy five minutes later was thwarted by Hatter keeper Emily Plotz. In total, Stetson managed seven shots in the first 45 minutes and held the Bisons to three.
Lipscomb advances to Sunday's ASUN Championship Final where they will face the winner of No. 1 FGCU & No. 4 Kennesaw State, which face each other at 7 PM tonight. Sunday's Championship Match will be played at 1 PM ET on ESPN3 from FGCU's Soccer Complex.
Lipscomb vs. Stetson Additional Championship Notes
- Lipscomb outshot the Hatters 15-7 after halftime with 10 coming on frame compared to only five for Stetson.
- Leah Cernicky was credited with the assist on the game-winning goal; her second of the season.
- The double overtime victory marked the first for Lipscomb in ASUN Championship play after previously falling to Kennesaw State in 2014.
- In the regular season meeting, Stetson left Nashville with a 2-0 victory against the Bisons on goals from Sarah Collins & Lindsay Parent.
- The ASUN Championship Semifinal match served as the first meeting between the two sides in postseason history.
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