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Furman Falters In Regular Season Finale At ETSU, 2-0; Paladins Earn Fourth Seed In SoCon Tourney

Kellsey Weaver
Kellsey Weaver

2016 SoCon Women's Soccer Championship Bracket

Johnson City, Tenn. -- Irina Brutsch scored on a sixth-minute free kick and Elena Pasani headed in an insurance goal in the 77th minute to lead ETSU to a 2-0 victory over Furman in the regular season finale for both teams on Sunday afternoon at Summers-Taylor Stadium in Johnson City, Tenn.

With the loss, Furman finished the regular season at 12-4-1 overall and 6-3-0 in Southern Conference play. The Paladins dropped to a tie for third place in the league standings and will host fifth-seeded UNCG in the quarterfinal round of the SoCon Tournament on Seagraves Field on Saturday, October 29, at 2 p.m. ETSU improved to 11-5-2 overall and 6-2-1 in the SoCon. The Bucs grabbed the No. 2 seed and will also host a quarterfinal round game next weekend.

ETSU started quickly in the opening half and earned a free kick from 19 yards out five minutes into the match. Brutsch curled her shot off the inside of the left post and into net at the 5:19 mark to give the Bucs the 1-0 lead.

Redshirt senior Rose Hull made several diving stops to keep the margin at 1-0. Carlie Couch created Furman's best chance of the opening half with a shot from the right side of the box that was denied, while ETSU's Lea Ann Cutshall saved a header from Virginia Poe off a Paladin corner kick late in the opening period.

Furman attempted to increase the pressure on the Bucs in the second half, but were not able to turn much of its possession into chances on goal. The Paladins best scoring opportunity came in the 75th minute as Couch won the ball at the right edge of the box and passed back to Molly Dwyer. The junior played a cross to Amanda Baker at the top of the six-yard box, but the freshman's shot was tipped over the bar by Cutshall.

ETSU made the Paladins pay moments later as Emily McKerlie chased down a Bucs' corner kick on the left side of the box and served a cross inside the penalty spot. Pasani hammered a head past Furman goalkeeper Kellsey Weaver at 76:38 to double the lead.

"We did not have our best focus today and can't afford to take plays off at times," said Paladin head coach Andrew Burr. "ETSU is a talented opponent and we must play with more effort and focus."

Cutshall finished with six saves to earn the shutout in goal for ETSU. Hull and Weaver each recorded three stops apiece for the Paladins.

ETSU managed a 15-14 advantage in total shot attempts, including an 8-6 edge in shots on target. The Bucs' victory marked its first over the Paladins in 12 all-time meetings between the schools.

Saturday's SoCon Quarterfinal between Furman and UNCG will be streamed live on the SoCon Digital Network with live statistics provided through StatBroadcast. The links will be posted at FurmanPaladins.com.

Tickets for Saturday's match will be available at FurmanPaladins.com later in the week and can also be purchased at the Stone Stadium entrance beginning one hour prior to kickoff.

Updates on Furman women's soccer can be found on Twitter by following @FurmanWSoccer.



Jordan Caskey, Furman Sports Information