GROVE CITY — The Grove City College women’s soccer team earned a 2-0 victory over 3rd-seeded Washington & Jefferson in the semifinals of the Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championship Tournament at Don Lyle Field.
The win propelled the 2nd-seeded Wolverines (11-6-2) into their 8th consecutive PAC tourney title match.
Grove City will host 4th-seeded Chatham University in Saturday’s 7 p.m. finals at Don Lyle Field.
The Wolverines broke through at 23:32 when midfielder Jess Book headed in a corner kick from defender Colleen Zilka. The 5-foot-11 Book gained inside position on W&J goalie Shayla Watkins, then headed in Zilka’s kick for her 2nd goal of the season. It is Book’s 1st career game-winning goal. Grove City doubled the lead at 63:28 when midfielder Shannon Brawley scored an unassisted goal, her 4th tally of the season.
Grove City outshot W&J (6-9-3), 22-11, as the Wolverines had 11 shots in each half. Grove City put 11 shots on goal while W&J had 5 shots on goal. Grove City also owned a 7-2 edge in corner kicks.
Grove City goalkeeper Columbia Harkrader made 5 saves to earn her 7th shutout of the season and the 13th of her career. She is now tied for 2nd all-time at Grove City with 13 shutouts.
Grove City is the defending conference champion. Fourth-seeded Chatham (8-6-3) will make its first-ever appearance in the conference finals. Grove City rallied for a 3-2 double-OT home win Oct. 19 over Chatham as forward Michaela Burke recorded a hat trick.
• Westminster’s Titans fell to Chatham, 1-0, in the PAC Tournament semifinals. Westminster, the No. 1 seed, finished with an overall record of 12-6-2.
The Titans and Cougars remained scoreless at halftime. Chatham outshot the Titans, 7-4, but Westminster goalkeeper Camille Holzschuh made 4 saves.
In the 2nd half, the Titans generated 8 shots, but Chatham struck the decisive blow when midfielder Paxton Steffy scored off of a re-directed shot in the 66th minute. This marked the 1st goal Westminster gave up to a PAC counterpart this season.
The Titans outshot the Cougars (12-11), while Chatham led in corner kicks (3-2). Holzschuh collected 6 saves. Ashley Frank fired 2 shots on goal.
• Volleyball — It had been 12 years since Grove City last won a PAC Championship Tournament match. But the Wolverines ended that drought by downing defending conference champion Bethany (W.Va.) on its home floor, 19-25, 25-16, 25-23, 25-21, at Hummel Field House.
Grove City, the No. 6 seed in the 6-team conference tournament, will now face No. 2 seed Geneva in tonight’s semifinals. Grove City (19-9) had dropped a pair of 5-set decisions to Bethany in the regular season, including 3 days ago in Grove City College Arena.
Three days after recording a career-high 21 kills against Bethany in the regular-season finale, Emma Hartshorn paced the Wolverines with 19 kills. Elisabeth Sems posted 12 kills for Grove City. Maggie Troxel added 5 kills while playing a season-high 3 sets in the win. Setter Cassidy Kohmann distributed 33 assists and also served a pair of aces. Senior libero Katie McClymonds (Slippery Rock High) led the defense with 24 digs while Sems had 13 digs. Kohmann totaled 11 digs and Hartshorn recorded 10 digs.
Grove City, in the 2nd set, embarked on a 6-0 run to take a 21-13 lead. Sems’ 3 consecutive kills capped the spurt. Bethany led the 3rd set, 20-17, but 2 Sems kills, a Kohmann kill and a Bethany error gave Grove City a 21-20 lead. Hartshorn’s kill then clinched the victory. In set 4, Hartshorn and Troxel each had a pair of kills in the closing moments as GCC extended its 21-19 lead into victory.
Grove City’s 19 wins this year are the most for the Wolverines since the 2007 team finished 20-12, and its .679 winning percentage is the best for the Wolverines since the 1996 team finished 22-10.
GCC meets Geneva at 7 p.m. today in the semis. The winner advances to Saturday’s championship match.
• Volleyball — The 5th-seeded Tomcats were eliminated from the PAC Championship Tournament after suffering a 3-0 quarterfinal loss to the 4th-seeded Saint Vincent Bearcats at the Carey Center, Latrobe.
The Bearcats won the 1st set, which featured 20 ties and 7 lead changes, 31-29. Saint Vincent went on to win 25-21 in the 2nd and 3rd sets to clinch the win and advance to the conference semifinals.
For Thiel, Raquel McDonald led with 12 kills; Natalie Zucco led with 15 digs while also collecting 8 kills; Rebecca Dougherty recorded 8 kills. Dougherty and McDonald combined for 5 blocks; Courtney Grubbs handed out a match-best 33 assists and 10 digs, and Hailley Kendall chipped in 12 digs for the Tomcats of 3rd-year Head Coach Tyler North, won 9 of its final 15 matches in 2019.
BUTLER COUNTY COMMUNITY COLLEGE
PINEHURST, N.C. –– The BCCC volleyball team, coming off its 2nd straight National Junior College Athletic Assn. Division III Region XX crown and 4th in 5 seasons, won its 1st-round Mid-Atlantic District Tournament match before dropping 2, including to 2018 national champ Owens Community College.
The Pioneers topped Patrick Henry Community College, Martinsville, Va., 25-18, 21-25, 25-15, 25-23 in the opening round behind Morgan Malinski’s 41 assists, Madyson McAninch’s 37 digs, Abby Kopac’s 9 kills, and Makenzie McDowell added 23 digs and 17 kills for the Pioneers.
McDowell had 17 digs and 6 kills as the Pioneers fell to Owens, Perrysburg, Ohio, 25-15, 25-4, 25-13. McAninch added 17 digs; Malinski, freshman setter from Slippery Rock, 13 assists; Kopac collected 6 kills.
Columbus (Ohio) State Community College beat the Pioneers 25-18, 25-15, 25-11. McAninch had 24 digs, Malinski 13 assists, and Kaylee Ebbert had 13 digs and 5 kills, and McDowell added 5 kills for the Pioneers, whose season ended at 19-5.
Owens (40-4) won the Mid-Atlantic District Tournament title and advances to the NJCAA Division III championships Nov. 14-16 in Rochester, Minn.