ORANGE BEACH, AL–– (NUEagles.com) The Northwest University Eagles punched their ticket to the semifinals of the NAIA Women’s Soccer Championships with a convincing 4-1 victory over No. 17 ranked Reinhardt of Waleska, Georgia this afternoon in the Orange Beach Sportplex. The Eagles scored three first half goals while the defense limited the RU Eagles to just one shot on goal in the first half on their way to knocking off their second ranked opponent in two days.
After a weather delay of an hour and 40 minutes, the Eagles took an early 1-0 lead when freshman Rylee Rassier scored in the fourth minute after taking a pass from teammate, Jubilee Zevenbergen. Then it was Zevenbergen on the scoring end with 29:11 left in the half with the help from an assist from senior, Kortney Hudak. Less than three minutes later, it would be Hudak putting her shot past the RU goalkeeper with the assist going to Rylee Rassier giving the Eagles a 3-0 which would carry through the half.
The Northwest U defense took over in the second half limiting Reinhardt shots and controlling possession, but in the 48th minute, RU’s Katie Hall finally put the RU Eagles on the scoreboard with an unassisted goal. NU’s Hannah Nicholson scored the game clincher in the 85th minute with the sophomore Zevenbergen getting her second assist in the game. With Reinhardt pressing hard in the final minutes with six shots, the Eagle defense was solid with NU keeper, Lauren Hellum, making a save and Sharaya Roberts blocking RU’s final two shot attempts.
Lauren Hellum earned the win in goal for Northwest U (14-6-3) making three saves in goal. Rylee Rassier and Jubilee Zevenbergen led the Eagles with three shots and three shots on goal each. NU took 12 shots with 10 shots on goal.
For Reinhardt (16-3-1), goalkeeper Taylor Asher made six saves for the Eagles. Katie Goodrich and Adrien Merrilles each took four shots, one shot on goal.
“After going the distance last night, I knew we would potentially be tired tonight,” commented Bryan Chud, NU head coach, “but I asked the ladies to dig deep and tonight we played some of our best soccer of the season. The ladies combined the heart and tenacity they showed last night with the ball movement and slick attacking play that we are capable of. It is amazing to be one game away from the National Championship game, but we have shown we belong to be here!”
Northwest U now faces No. 7 Northwestern Ohio in one semifinal on Friday, Dec. 2, at 12:30 p.m., at the Orange Beach Sportplex.