Women's Soccer Advances to MASCAC Title Game on Penalty Kicks

Women's Soccer Advances to MASCAC Title Game on Penalty Kicks

WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference player of the year Lauren DeSousa (Taunton, Mass.) made three saves in the penalty kick shootout and Kaitlyn Bongarzone (Mansfield, Mass.) converted the decisive penalty kick as third-seeded Bridgewater State upset Westfield State 3-1 in the shootout following a 1-1 overtime draw in the semifinal round of the 2016 MASCAC Women's Soccer Tournament on Friday night at Alumni Field.

Bridgewater (7-5-6) will compete in the MASCAC women's soccer title game for the ninth time in program history. The Bears will take on top-seeded Worcester State on Sunday afternoon at 2:00 PM in Worcester. Bridgewater has taken part in all 17 MASCAC tournaments since the inaugural year of 2000, winning the championship in 2002, 2003 and 2013.

Trailing by one in the second half, BSU freshman Tess Nagle (Pembroke, Mass.) tied the game in the 61st minute with her second goal of the season. Senior Amanda Leite (New Bedford, Mass.) served a ball from the right corner that was headed on by sophomore Taylor Loyd (Halifax, Mass.), and found Nagle at the back post. Nagle flicked a shot into the left side of the net to knot the score at 1-1.

Westfield got on the board first as senior Taylor Grijalva (Stratham, N.H.) slotted a long thru ball to freshman Bella Eduardo (Springfield, Mass.). Eduardo ran past Bridgewater's back line and beat DeSousa to the left side of the net with 18 minutes left in the first half.

Westfield generated a couple of scoring chances late, with Nicole Chretien (North Attleboro, Mass.) getting a blast off in transition that DeSousa saved in the 70th minute, then Marissa McGue (Quincy, Mass.) had another shot that DeSousa stopped off an ensuing corner kick.

Bridgewater had one golden opportunity in the 82nd minute as Madeline McNamara (Hull, Mass.) got a step behind a pair of Owls defenders but was stopped by WSU netminder Natalia Falcone (Sutton, Mass.).

The Bears had the better of the run of play in overtime, with several good serves into the penalty area, but were unable to convert.

In the shootout, Bridgewater's Courtney Pepin (Uxbridge, Mass.) scored on the first PK, and DeSousa responded with a fine stop on Caitlin MacGregor's (Hampden, Mass.) attempt. After the Bears' Alana Vincent (Taunton, Mass.) sailed a shot off the top of the crossbar, Westfield's Kate Matroni (Hampden, Mass.) hit the right post with a ball that bounced tantalizingly close to the goal line before DeSousa recoverd to smother it. BSU's Leite and Westfield's Eduardo traded scores, before Bongarzone converted to the low left side to give the Bears the 3-1 lead. DeSousa then ended the match by stopped the PK of Owls' goalkeeper Falcone.