ST. LOUIS, MO. – The No. 8 Pomona-Pitzer Women's Soccer team advanced to the Final Four for the first time in program history after winning the battle in PK's over No. 3 WashU on Sunday morning at Francis Field.
Season Impact: With the win, the Sagehens improve to 20-1-2 overall and have now beaten their highest ranked opponent in program history. The Sagehens also move their shutout streak to 10 games and have 20 on the year.
In most cases, a 0-0 tie would be considered a boring game by most but it was anything but that for 110 minutes. Both teams had big opportunities to win the game and both defenses played an exceptional match of soccer. The first big chance for WashU came in the eighth minute of the match after a save by Berardo, the Bears tried to strike the rebound first time but the shot went high to spoil the first chance of the day.
Wash U did a good job of controlling possession in the first half and kept the ball deep in Pomona-Pitzer territory. Credit to the Sagehen defense while being faced with multiple scoring opportunities in the first half, the defense stayed strong and defended well to assist Isa Berardo in keeping a clean first half.
The Sagehens had a good chance later in the first half as the Sagehens moved the ball up the field and first-year Hannah Mandell turned and clipped a ball of off the cross bar. On the ensuing corner, senior Brianna Lau headed the ball over to first-year Charlotte Tapp who took a good shot on goal but it was saved and cleared by the Bears to keep the game even at 0-0.
Just after the Sagehens chance, the Bears came back down the field and had a clear chance at goal, but Berardo came up with a huge save and kept the Bears off of the board. The Sagehens had one more solid chance at goal late in the first half as senior Lily Gane snuck through but WashU was able to come up with another big save as the two teams went into halftime scoreless.
The defenses stayed solid in the second half with neither team able to find many opportunities to get the ball in the back of the net. Both teams had shots on goal in the second half as the Sagehens tallied three and the Bears with one but none of them were spectacular looks at goal.
The biggest moment of the second half came with seconds remaining as the Bears broke free and had a chance to flick a ball on goal but Berardo came away with a game-saving stop to send the Sagehens and Bears into overtime.
After two scoreless periods, the Sagehens went into penalty kicks. Flashback to 2016, the Sagehens lost in the Elite 8 on PK's to the University of Chicago who they defeated in the Sweet 16 to reach the Elite 8 this season.
Fate would not repeat itself as the Sagehens nailed every single penalty kick they attempted and Berardo came up big again for the Sagehens with a stop on shot five as the Sagehens rushed the field and into the Final Four.
Up Next: The Sagehens will next travel to Greensboro, North Carolina where they will take on William Smith no December 6th at 1:45 p.m. EST.