Columbus State University

Columbus State heads back to final four after OT victory

Columbus State soccer player Mandy Janowitz took a pass deep down the right side, dribbled past three defenders, then placed a shot into the left corner of the net.

Janowitz’s goal, which came in the second overtime in the 102nd minute of the match, gave the Lady Cougars a 2-1 win over West Florida on Sunday afternoon in the NCAA Division II national quarterfinals. The match was played at Barry University in Miami Shores, Fla.

Fifth-ranked CSU will now face second-ranked Grand Valley State in the semifinals in Kansas City, Mo., on Dec. 1. The time has not been announced.

“When something like that happens, it is hard to remember every detail, but I was just trying to get through everyone and finally get a chance at an open goal,” Janowitz said.

Janowitz’s 12th goal of the season sends CSU to the final four for the second straight season.

“I felt like we were doing some good things in extra time,” CSU coach Jay Entlich said. “... Late in the game, we started to get back to what we are good at, passing, moving, creating chances, combining with each other.

“In the end, we knew that, probably, a single act ... would take precedence. and sure enough Janowitz, who has had an unbelieveable season dribbles through several players and tucks it in nicely.”

Nicole Corcione got CSU on the board only 8:55 into the match as she dribbled in from about 40 yards out before knocking it past the West Florida keeper.

West Florida (19-5) tied the match in the 69th minute as Kaljit Atwal scored on a corner kick.

The win was CSU’s 16th straight. The Lady Cougars will take a 21-2 record into the semifinals.

Last season, CSU faced Grand Valley State in the national championship match and lost 2-0. Grand Valley, which beat Central Missouri 3-1 on Sunday, has won three straight national titles and five in the past seven seasons.

“The nice thing is we are not the newcomer,” he said. “We know what to expect. We are going to ... be a part of something special. Our kids are excited about it. Last year, I am sure there were some nerves and this year there will be some nerves. But in the end it is getting that opporunity to compete and be in that final four.”