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Missed Chances Cost Paladins In 1-1 Draw With UNCG

India Robinson
India Robinson

Greenville, S.C. – Furman outshot UNCG 26-12, but Spartan goalkeeper Jamie Simmons recorded 15 saves, including a diving stop of Martha Hall's penalty kick in double overtime, as the schools played to a 1-1 draw in Southern Conference women's soccer action on Friday night at Stone Stadium.

Despite the draw, Furman (9-2-2, 2-1-2 SoCon) extended its home unbeaten streak to 11 matches, but the Paladins saw their nine-match home winning streak come to an end.  The tie moved the Spartans, who had won their last six regular season contests versus Furman, to 6-6-1 overall and 3-1-1 in the SoCon play.

Furman jumped into the lead at the 58:40 mark when India Robinson slipped a thru ball to freshman Stephanie DeVita streaking down the left channel behind the UNCG defense.  DeVita ran onto the pass and deposited her shot into the far side netting inside the right post for her league-leading 14 goal of the season.

UNCG came up with an almost immediate answer.  Furman goalkeeper Rose Hull and a Paladin defender had a miscommunication on a bouncing ball inside the six-yard box forcing Hull to leap and touch the ball over the cross bar.  On the ensuing corner kick, Cat Barnekow wrapped the ball into the near-side, upper right-hand corner off Hull's hands for the equalizer at 60:40.

The Paladins forced Simmons into three saves in the final 13 minutes of the half before the match headed to overtime.  In the first extra period, Jamie Alexander worked her way behind the back line down the left side only to see Simmons turn away her shot in a one-versus-one situation with the Spartan keeper.

After DeVita had her header stopped by Simmons in the opening seconds of overtime, it looked like Furman may have found the break it needed when the Paladins were awarded a penalty kick at the 101:58 mark.  Alexander attempted to run onto a bouncing ball on the right side of the box and missed making contact with the ball, but she and a UNCG defender collided with the Paladins being granted a spot kick.  Hall stepped up for the penalty, but her shot just a few feet to the keeper's right was blocked.  Hall retrieved the ball with an open net, but the senior fired high from inside seven yards.

The Paladins managed a 16-8 edge in shots on goal and compiled a 7-2 advantage in shots during overtime.  Hull stopped seven shots for the Paladins.

Furman will host league rival Elon on Sunday at Stone Stadium.  Kickoff is set for 2 p.m.  Tickets for Sunday's match are $3 for adults and $1 for children.  Furman students receive free admission with a valid student ID.

Fans can follow live statistics and live streaming video for the match by logging onto www.FurmanPaladins.com and can access live updates via Twitter by following @FurmanPaladins.