ATHENS, Ga. – After 104 scoreless minutes, Georgia buried a game-winning penalty kick in double overtime to defeat the UNCG women's soccer team, 1-0, in front of a crowd of 1,838 on Friday night at the UGA Soccer Stadium. Freshman goalkeeper Jamie Simmons (Houston, Texas/Clear Brook HS) finished the game with 14 saves in her collegiate debut.
"This is what college soccer is all about," said head coach Steve Nugent. "We had a tremendous plan tonight and it was working. It was just unfortunate with the penalty kick but I don't want to take anything away from UGA's performance tonight. We got an unbelievable performance from our freshman keeper Jamie Simmons."
Just three minutes into the second overtime UGA made a run down the field and crossed a ball inside the box that was inadvertently touched by a Spartan defender to set up a penalty kick for the Bullsdogs. All-SEC performer junior Alexa Newfield wasted no time and scored the golden goal into the lower left corner of the net.
UNCG was hanging time with the Bulldogs keeping the game scoreless through two halves and overtime.
In the second half, Simmons came up large on a number of occasions with seven saves. With 14 seconds remaining in the game a ball was crossed inside the box that Georgia freshman Andie Fontanetta header to goal but Simmons made the game-saving stop.
The Spartans best chance came with two minutes left in the second half as redshirt senior Cat Barnekow (Santa Rosa, Calif./Santa Rosa JC) took a free kick that UNCG could not convert on an open net after the Bulldogs keeper Ashley Baker missed the save.
The Spartans and Bulldogs played to a scoreless first half after UGA led 8-1 in shots. Simmons was stellar between the pipes making four saves to keep the game tied.
Sophomore midfielder Ashley Stokes (Cary, N.C./Green Hope HS) had the first shot on net in the 17th minute for the Spartans.
Just before the half in the 45th minute UGA had another opportunity to break the tie as Susannah Dennis took a shot but Simmons turned away the effort.
The Blue and Gold are now 9-14 in regular season openers.
UNCG returns to action next Friday, August 24 as it heads to Winston Salem, N.C. to face ACC power Wake Forest at 7 p.m.
Be sure to follow all updates about the 2012 UNCG women's soccer team on www.uncgspartans.com or on twitter @UNCGsports.
- UNCG -