Bulldogs Beat Bonnies, Advance To Play La Salle In A-10 Semifinals

Kelly Mahoney

Atlantic 10 Women's Soccer Championship Semifinals

Butler (12-4-4, 6-1-3) vs. La Salle (15-4-1, 9-0-1)

Friday, Nov. 2 - 5:00 p.m. ET
Kingston, R.I. - URI Soccer Complex
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KINGSTON, R.I. - A timely 77th-minute goal by sophomore defender Kelly Mahoney gave the Bulldogs a 1-0 win over St. Bonaventure in the conference quarterfinals Thursday afternoon. Butler, who has lost just once since Sept. 7, advances to play top-seeded La Salle Friday for a trip to the league championship.

The fourth-seeded Bulldogs recorded the game-winning goal following a free kick just past midfield on the right side.

Sophomore Stephanie Kaylor found fellow sophomore Elise Kotsakis in stride on the right side. Kotsakis then beat a defender and sent a pass to the back post that Mahoney converted for her fourth goal of the season.

Following the win, Butler head coach Tari St. John commented on her team's strong second-half play that ultimately led to the victory.

"Not too many teams can turn a game around like that," St. John said. "We have strong leaders and a team that wasn't ready for the season to be over. There is a belief within the squad and that carried us through."

The Bulldogs (12-4-4, 6-1-3) outshot St. Bonaventure 11-7 en route to recording its school-record 11th shutout of the season. Junior goalkeeper Julie Burton picked up her seventh shutout of the year, tying her for second most shutouts by a Bulldog in a single season.

The Bulldogs will face an even tougher test Friday when they take on top-seeded La Salle.

The Explorers (15-4-1, 9-0-1) are coming off a 2-0 win over Charlotte in the conference quarterfinals and have suffered just one loss in their last 14 matches. La Salle is led offensively by sophomore forward Kelsey Haycook and junior midfielder Renee Washington, who have scored eight and six goals, respectively.

Butler and La Salle did not meet during the regular season. Friday's match-up will be the first meeting between the teams since 1994, when Butler picked up a win over the Explorers.

"La Salle is very athletic and has made a habit of winning lately," St. John said. "We will have to be at our best."

For live stats and streaming, visit the Atlantic 10 Women's Soccer Championship Central.


2012 Women's Soccer Championship Bracket

 

BY THE NUMBERS:

(As of Oct. 31, 2012)

Butler La Salle
Shots per game (A-10 ranking) 15.63 (3rd) 18.79 (2nd)
Goals per game 1.16 (9th)

1.84 (2nd)

Goals against average 0.69 (1st) 1.02 (4th)
Shutouts 10 (1st) (3rd)