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Nicole Auger
Nicole Auger scored what proved to be the game winner for the Bears.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer Advances in NCAA Tournament

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer team scored three goals in the second half as No. 1 seed Bears defeated the No. 8 seed Carson-Newman Eagles 4-1 in the first round of the NCAA Southeast Regional. Alexis Cagno, Nicole Auger, Ella Garner and Aly Ramsey all scored goals to help the Bears move on to the second round. The Bears will now host Columbus State on Sunday afternoon with the winner advancing to the Sweet Sixteen.

The Eagles came out aggressive from the start, getting the first three shots of the evening before the Bears had 14 of the last 15 shots of the half. The Bears finally broke through in the 42nd minute when Elin Hansson had a breakaway down the left side and passed it to Cagno for the tap in goal.

After taking the 1-0 lead into halftime, it only took the Bears one minute to score as Hansson set up Auger for the goal to extend the lead to 2-0. The Eagles cut the lead to one with their first goal in 239 minutes of action this season against the Bears with a 59th minute goal from Savannah Fields.

Just a minute later, The Bears extended the lead back to two with a Garner goal after a corner kick from Ria Acton.  The Bears put the exclamation mark on their first home NCAA game in four years when Ramsey scored in the 79th minute as the Bears defeated C-N 4-1.

The Bears doubled up the Eagles 8-4 in corner kicks including Garner’s goal. LR had 23 shots on the night as the Eagles had 12. S.A. Phillips made five saves in goal for the Bears.

This was the Bears first-ever game as the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Bears are now 6-7-7 in NCAA play. Bears look to move to 7-7-7 on Sunday. This was the fifth home game in the NCAA Tournament and their first all-time win as the Bears move to 1-1-3 at home in NCAA games. This was also the first time the Bears have ever beaten a team three times in a season.

Acton is now tied for third all-time in assists with her 24th career assist. Hansson also reached double digits assists on the season with 11 after two in this contest. Eleven assists is 4th most in a single season.

Lenoir-Rhyne is 16-0-4 on the season. The Bears will host Columbus State in the second round on Sunday. Kick-off from Moretz Sports Athletic Campus is scheduled for 2:00 PM.