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Ria Acton
Ria Acton, the SAC Defensive Player of the Year, had two goals for the Bears and converted in the penalty kick finale.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer Wins SAC Tournament

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer Team claimed their fourth SAC Tournament title after defeating the No. 2 seed Catawba in penalty kick’s. The teams played to a 2-2 draw after 110 minutes then the Bears hit their first four PK’s to claim the title and wrap up the number one seed in the NCAA Southeast region. RIa Acton scored both goals then Acton, Evan O’Leary, Elin Hansson and Ella Garner connected on their PK’s.

The Bears found themselves trailing for the first time since the first half of the opening game as Hannah Dunn gave the Indians an early 1-0 lead in the 27th minutes. Acton then tied it up after a free kick in the 35th minute to send the teams into the break all even. Acton then put the Bears ahead early in the second half with a PK after a Catawba foul in the box.

Dunn then found the equalizer in the 74th minute to tie it at two. The two teams then played the last 35 minutes scoreless to set up PK’s. After O’Leary hit her shot, Catawba’s Sydney Jimmo missed hers wide. Acton and Hansson then connected to give the Bears a 3-1 lead. Bree Ehmer also missed wide for Catawba then Garner drilled her shot to clinch the Bears fourth SAC Title.

This was the Bears 10th SAC Title game as the Bears are now 3-6-1 in SAC title games. The tie does officially snap the Bears 13-game winning streak, but the Bears still have a record of 15-0-4. The Bears sweep the regular season title and tournament title for the third time in program history. (2010, 2012).

Neve Duston broke the school record with her 90th career game.

Five of the last nine SAC Tournament games has gone into overtime for the Bears. However, this was the first game since 2017 that went into PK’s.

The NCAA Tournament First Round will start on Friday November 17th from Hickory. NCAA Selection Show will be tomorrow at 6:30 PM to determine the bracket.