For the third year in a row, the North Georgia College & State University women’s soccer team has advanced to the Peach Belt Conference Tournament semifinal round. The Saints defeated Clayton State University 4-2 on Tuesday night at the North Georgia Soccer Field in Dahlonega for the right to head to Augusta for the second round of the tournament.
North Georgia (14-3-2) will take on the No. 1 team in the nation, Armstrong Atlantic State University, at 5 p.m. Friday in Augusta after Armstrong defeated the University of Montevallo 1-0 in their own quarterfinal match Tuesday afternoon. The last time the Saints and Pirates met, the Pirates were able to escape with a 4-3 win in overtime.
Junior midfielder Kelly Penston led the Saints’ attack with a great performance that included scoring the Saints first two goals of the game, to go along with setting up another later in the contest.
Natalia Valentine also scored twice in the contest for Clayton State (10-7-2).
Abby Trevino and Caroline Wallace also scored for North Georgia, which out-shot Clayton State 21-10 and held an 8-1 advantage in corner kicks.
Laoise O’Driscoll made seven saves for Clayton State while Mallory Sayre had three for the Saints.
YOUNG HARRIS MEN 2, UNC PEMBROKE 1: Young Harris College scored twice in a six-minute span midway through the second half to rally for a victory in a quarterfinal match of the Peach Belt Conference Men’s Soccer Tournament on Tuesday in Young Harris.
Brett Luccia and Niall McCabe scored for the Mountain Lions. Wezley Barnard made four saves.
The Mountain Lions (14-4-1) advance to the semifinals at 7:30 p.m. on Friday at Blanchard Woods Park in Evans. They will face the winner of the quarterfinal match between top seed Lander University and No. 8 seed University of South Carolina Aiken.
FLAGLER MEN 2, NORTH GEORGIA 1: The season came to an end for the North Georgia College & State University men’s soccer team Tuesday night as No. 21 Flagler defeated North Georgia in the Peach Belt Conference tournament quarterfinal match in St. Augustine, Fla.
Flagler (10-3-3) advances to the semifinals Friday in Augusta.
Flagler edged out to an early 1-0 lead in the 16th minute when Eriend Lofsgaardscored off an assist from Johny Cosgrove.
Manuel Hernandez scored the equalizer for sixth-seeded North Georgia (7-7-2) in the 22nd minute off a pass from Amin El-Shami.
In the 80th minute, Kevin Keenan gave the nationally-ranked Saints the go-ahead goal with a header off a free kick from Cosgrove.
Kristopher Alonzo made eight saves for North Georgia.