Region/state roundup: California Lutheran ousts No. 1 Christopher Newport from NCAA women’s soccer tourney in penalty kicks



Christopher Newport’s top-ranked team suffered a familiar exit in the NCAA Division III Tournament. The Captains lost a quarterfinal on penalty kicks at home Sunday after 110 evenly played minutes, but this one might be even more painful than last year’s.

California Lutheran pulled even with just 3:18 to go in regulation against the Captains to force a 1-1 standoff. After 20 scoreless minutes, Cal Lu then won a five-round shootout 4-3 to advance to the national semifinals in Salem, near Roanoke.

CNU won its only championship in 2021. Last year, CNU never lost a match in normal play or overtime but fell to Virginia Wesleyan in a quarterfinal shootout after 110 scoreless minutes.

This time, though, it looked the Captains (19-0-3) would advance after Sarah Smith scored her second goal in two days, netting a shot off an Emma Ricci pass for a 1-0 lead in the 48th minute.

But late in regulation, the Regals’ Eden Quiroz headed home Brynn McMahon’s corner kick.

In the shootout, Cal Lu goalkeeper Kelsey Slaugh made two saves, though Hanna Heaton, Hannah Calliott and Kyleigh Gough scored for the Captains.

CNU keeper Amy Sidaway made one save, but Cal Lu’s Savanna Durr drilled a high shot into the net’s upper right corner in the fifth round to ignite a celebration. The Regals made the most of their cross-country trip, winning twice in two days.


JMU, No. 7 Virginia advance to round of 16

Davide Materazzi, a former Lionsbridge FC star, netted a first-half goal to send James Madison to a 1-0 victory at fourth-seeded Georgetown in the NCAA round of 32.

The Dukes will play either 13th-seeded UCLA or Loyola Marymount in the round of 16.

Meanwhile, in Charlottesville, seventh-seeded Virginia ousted Florida International 2-1 in overtime on two goals by Leo Afonso.

He entered the game in the 26th minute and scored in the 35th. FIU pulled even on a goal by Joao Domingues in the 40th, but Afonso netted the winner on an overhead kick in the 94th.

The Cavaliers (11-3-4) advanced to a round-of-16 match against Indiana, a clash of two of the nation’s longest-standing powerhouses.


UNC wins title with 23-year-old coach

Top-seeded North Carolina repeated as the NCAA Division I champion, beating No. 2 Northwestern 2-1 in a double-overtime penalty shootout.

In her first year at the helm at UNC, former star Tar Heels player Erin Matson, 23, became the youngest college head coach to win a national championship. The Tar Heels finished 18-3 (5-1 ACC) and won their sixth consecutive ACC title en route to their 11th program national championship — their fifth in six years.

Third-period chaos knotted the game at 1, with freshman Charly Bruder opening the scoring on a UNC penalty corner, followed by Peyton Halsey’s penalty stroke for Northwestern just 10 minutes later.

The teams played through two scoreless overtimes. In the second round of the shootout, Halsey missed the first shot, followed by UNC’s Ryleigh Heck, who — with her back to the goal — dribbled the ball around goalkeeper Annabel Skubisz and shot it to the right side for the winner.

North Carolina outshot Northwestern 14-8, but drew only four corners to the Wildcats’ six.

Middlebury takes D-III trophy on CNU’s field

Middlebury won its sixth consecutive Division III championship, defeating fourth-ranked Johns Hopkins 2-0 at Christopher Newport’s Jennings Family Stadium.

Audrey Lazar netted both goals for the Connecticut-based Panthers, who completed a 23-0 season.


UVA to play in Bahamas tourney next season

Virginia will compete at the 2024 Baha Mar Hoops Bahamas Championship next November in Nassau, Kentucky-based bdG Sports announced Sunday.

Baylor, St. John’s and Tennessee will complete the field about a year from now.


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