The Captains sting back, avenging their only defeat this year against the Hornets.
In 2017, the Christopher Newport University Women’s Soccer team lost to the University of Lynchburg in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) playoffs, which ultimately ended their season.
On Nov. 17th, 2018, the Captains got a chance for revenge as they hosted the Hornets in the Elite Eight with a spot in the Final Four on the line. The Captains came out on top 1-0, thanks to their defense and goalkeeping throughout the game.
The first half of the game between the Captains and the Hornets was filled with action but not goals as CNU posted seven shots, while Lynchburg shot eleven. In net Haley Eiser made save after save, frustrating the Hornets shooters.
The Hornets almost scored the game’s first goal when Kennedy Jakubek got a wide open look at the goal and delivered a rocket. The shot hit the top post, however, and score remained 0-0.
The second half was similar to the first. Both teams were producing shots but could not get on the board due to their goalkeeping and defense.
Once the 80th minute struck, Gabby Gillis took the game into her own hands.
The senior All-American strided down the field and split two defenders right before setting up Riley Cook for her 25th goal of the year, giving the Captains a 1-0 lead.
The Captains’ players maintained their lead over the Hornets as the clock ticked down to zero. Cook’s goal became her 12th game-winner of the year, leading the nation.
This is the furthest the Women’s Soccer team has ever gone in the postseason.
Their 22-1 record is also the best in program history, breaking the previous record that was set just a year ago.
“I never would’ve imagined that our program would progress so much within my four years. All the team’s hard work and dedication is finally starting to pay off. It is an indescribable feeling to still be playing. We have an overwhelming support that makes every moment worthwhile. I’m grateful for every extra game and hope we come home with a Championship” said Gilis.
The senior All-American and two-time Capital Athletic Conference (CAC) Player of The Year has had one of the best careers in program history.
Similar to Victoria Perry, who holds the current all time points record with 109, Gillis currently sits at 96 and looks to continue her legacy this weekend.
They will go on to play in the Final Four for the first time in program history, traveling down to Greensboro, N.C. on Friday, Nov. 30th to take on the defending National Champions, No. 5 Williams College.
The game will take place at 7:45 p.m. and the winner will earn a spot in the National Championship that will take place the next day.
If the Captains can win both of these games, then they will be the first soccer team in CNU history to win a National Championship.