Messiah adds women’s soccer title to men’s
A year after falling in the national championship game to Wheaton (Illinois), Messiah had its revenge December 6 at Greensboro, defeating the Thunder, 5-0, for the Falcons’ second national title in four years.
It was the largest margin of victory in the 23-year history of the tournament.
Led by two goals from most outstanding player Erin Hench, Messiah closed its season 23-0-2. The Falcons’ last national championship (in 2005) capped an undefeated season as well, and also came in Greensboro.
“It is very exciting to come away with a national title,” said Messiah head coach Scott Frey. “And I would have to add that I love Greensboro.”
The women were cheered on by the Falcons men’s team, who won their own championship earlier in the day.
Hench’s first goal was the only score of the first half, and it came after Falcons goalkeeper Brindley Beckwith saved Ali Kopelman’s header just inches from the goal line. The Falcons scored four goals in the final 34 minutes, beginning with a shot from Kacie Klynstra three yards out of the goal. Hench followed Klynstra’s score with her second goal of the match on an assist from Rachel Horning. Amy Horst’s free kick over the head of goalkeeper Justine Morey made the score 4-0. Hench sent an assist to Rachel Loya for the final score of the game.
“People may look at the score and think the game wasn’t close, but it was very close for the most part,” Frey said. “I thought that save by Brindley was absolutely huge. When you think about that, how much different could the game have been?”
Wheaton, winners of three of the last four national titles, finished 22-4 on the season. Senior forward Erin Hodina said the team was determined to come back from one goal down at half, but it wasn’t meant to be.
“At the half of the game, we all thought that we were going to come back out really strong and score,” she said. “But Messiah is just a really strong and physical team to keep fighting for the whole 90 minutes of the game.”
Klynstra was one of three seniors on Messiah’s squad to finish their careers with two national titles.
“This is an absolutely amazing feeling coming back to Greensboro and winning not only my second but the team’s second national title,” Klynstra said. “I love Greensboro!”
Wheaton (Ill.) 3, Williams 1
Wheaton (Ill.) 1 2 – 3
Williams 0 1 – 1
First half: WH – Lee Taryne (unassisted), 5:55.
Second half: WH – Kari Klynstra (unassisted), 52:56; WI – Gabrielle Woodson (unassisted), 59:18; WH – Maria Della Toree (unassisted), 83:48.
Shots: Wheaton (Ill.) 13, Williams 21. Goalkeeper saves: Wheaton (Ill.) (Ingrid Erickson) 8, Williams (Lauren Sinnenberg) 2. Corner kicks: Wheaton (Ill.) 2, Williams 1.
Messiah 3, William Smith 0
William Smith 0 0 – 0
Messiah 1 2 – 3
First half: M – Erin Hench (unassisted), 32:22
Second half: M – Amanda Naeher (Katlyn Musser), 68:14; M – Kacie Klynstra (Rachel Loya, Olivia Scott), 79:12.
Shots: William Smith 3, Messiah 19. Goalkeeper saves: William Smith (Amanda Davis) 7, Messiah (Brindley Beckwith) 1. Corner kicks: William Smith 3, Messiah 0.
Messiah 5, Wheaton (Ill.) 0
Messiah 1 4 – 5
Wheaton (Ill.) 0 0 – 0
First half: M – Erin Hench (unassisted), 27:44.
Second half: M – Kacie Klynstra (unassisted), 56:05, M – Hench (Rachel Horning) 64:14; M – Amy Horst (unassisted) 79:44; M – Rachel Loya (Hench), 80:50.
Shots: Messiah 21, Wheaton (Ill.) 7. Goalkeeper saves: Messiah (Brindley Beckwith) 3. Wheaton (Ill.) (Justine Morey 1, Ingrid Erickson 2) 3. Corner kicks: Messiah 3, Wheaton (Ill.) 0.
© 2010 The National Collegiate Athletic Association