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FGCU Set for First-Ever NCAA Tournament Game Against Florida
|Florida Gulf Coast||0||0||0|
|UF||15:53||Tahnai Annis (Erika Tymrak )|
|UF||67:42||Tahnai Annis (Annie Speese )|
|UF||79:54||Lindsay Thompson (Tahnai Annis , Annie Speese)|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||UF|
|Shots (on Goal)||3 (1)||12 (6)|
FORT MYERS, Fla. – After winning its first-ever Atlantic Sun Tournament Championship last weekend, the FGCU women’s soccer team heads back to James G. Pressly Stadium to take on Florida in the first round of the NCAA tournament on Saturday at 7 p.m. in Gainesville, Fla.
FGCU earned the A-Sun’s automatic bid into the field of 64 after taking down Mercer, 1-0, in double-overtime on Sunday. The Eagles became the first FGCU team to reach the NCAA tournament since becoming postseason eligible back on August 12.
The Eagles and Gators will be facing each other for the second time this season at James G. Pressly Stadium. The Green and Blue fell, 5-0, back on Sept. 11, a loss which fueled the Eagles to start a streak of nine straight shutouts beginning on Sept. 18 through Oct. 21. The Eagles didn’t allow another goal for 908 minutes before surrendering a score against Belmont on Oct. 23.
The Green and Blue have had balanced scoring this season with nine players registering two goals or more. Senior Gina Petracco (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot HS) leads the team with 21 points on eight goals and five assists, and enters the contest fresh off her CoSIDA All-District First Team Selection last weekend. The Fort Myers, product added a goal and an assist in the tournament to land her on the A-Sun All-Tournament team.
The hero of the A-Sun tournament was freshman Shannen Wacker (Parker, Colo./Ponderosa HS), who earned MVP honors after scoring two goals, including the game-winning goal in double-overtime to clinch the A-Sun Championship and send FGCU to the NCAA tournament. Wacker was also honored with a selection to College Soccer 360’s Primetime Performer list this week.
Senior goalkeeper Stephanie Powers (Seffner, Fla./Armwood HS), an A-Sun All-Tournament team selection, only allowed one goal in 196 minutes in the A-Sun tournament. Powers has a minuscule 0.67 goals against average, which ranks 28th in the nation, in addition to a team-record 12 shutouts. She is also the A-Sun All-Time leader in career shutouts with 31.
FGCU also had great contributions from its fabulous four on the backline, as seniors KC Correllus (Merritt Island, Fla./Satellite HS/Florida State) and Kat Hunter (Safety Harbor, Fla./Clearwater Central Catholic), along with redshirt junior Ashley Ciesielczyk (Oregon, Ohio/Clay HS) and junior Jennifer Crittenberger (Lighthouse Point, Fla./Cardinal Gibbons HS) limited every A-Sun opponent this season to 10 shots or less, including both games in the A-Sun tournament.
The Gators fell just short in the SEC final losing, 3-2, against Auburn. Florida is led by junior Erika Tymrak, who has 12 goals and six assists on the season. Florida makes its 15th NCAA appearance in the program’s 17-year history in 2011 and this is the Gators’ ninth consecutive NCAA bid. Last year, Florida played host to NCAA First and Second Round action, defeating Mercer 3-0 and falling 4-2 in penalty kicks to Duke after playing to a scoreless tie.
Tickets are $7 for adults and $3 for children 12 & under, students and senior citizens. For more information, contact the UAA Ticket Office at (352) 375-4683, ext. 6800 or 1-800-34GATOR, ext. 6800 (state of Florida only). Live stats are available on www.NCAASports.com with live audio & video for UF FGCU match available at www.GatorZone.com.
Fans will have the chance to keep up with all the action and interact through a live blog via CoverItLive. Live video, live audio, live stats, in-game Twitter updates (@FGCUEagles), CoverItLive blog, box scores and recaps will be available at www.FGCUAthletics.com.