NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Goalie Mary Campbell (Gr., Orlando, Fla.) made 14 saves, including eight in the second half, to earn Player of the Game accolades and keep Pacific Coast Division Champion/No. 1-ranked California Polytechnic State University in check to allow Southeast Division Champion/No. 6 the University of Florida to shock the Mustangs and snag a 9-7 victory to make the 2019 Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship at the University of Notre Dame’s Rolfs Aquatic Center.
- The win advances Florida into the National Championship title game against 2012, 2013, 2017, 2018 National Champion and 2011 runner-up the University of California-Davis as the Sierra Pacific Division Champion/No. 2 Aggies went to double-sudden death overtime in the other semifinal to top Southwest Division Champion/No. 5 San Diego State University by a 7-6 score.
- It marks Florida’s third National Championship title game appearance as the Gators fell in 2001 (5-4 L vs. Michigan State University at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio) and 2006 (5-4 L vs. Michigan State at Nothwestern University in Evanston, Ill.).
- A 14-time qualifier for Nationals, Florida has never finished outside the Top 10 at the National Club tournament by placing second (2001, 2006), third (2002, 2004, 2012, 2018), fourth (2003, 2016), fifth (2000, 2011), seventh (2008), eighth (2014) and ninth (2005, 2007).
- The 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2019 Southeast Division Champion never trailed against the seven-time National Champion (2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) and 16-time Pacific Coast Division winner (1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2017, 2018, 2019) Mustangs.
- Kelly Martin (Gr., Orlando, Fla.) staked Florida to the early lead as the she broke free for a score at 5:53 of the first quarter.
- Emily Milton (So., Reedley, Calif.) balanced the scoreboard for Cal Poly at 1:10, but a penalty shot by Phoebe Iglesias (Jr., Miami, Fla.) with 47 seconds remaining and an even-strength strike by Martin with four ticks on the clock put the Gators ahead at 3-1.
- The lead was short-lived, however, as Milton mowed through the Florida defense for a natural marker (6:16) and a five-meter penalty shot (5:42) to even the damage at three-all less than 90 seconds into the second quarter.
- Facing a resurgent Mustangs squad with plenty of experience in pressure situations at the National Collegiate Club Championship, the Gators did not buckle under the weight of their situation.
- Mistakes by the Mustangs would prove to be their undoing as a pair of penalty shots by Iglesias (3:13, 34 seconds) sandwiched a man-up tally by Martin (1:15) to double-up Cal Poly and give Florida a 6-3 lead heading into halftime.
- Florida added to its lead with another penalty shot by Iglesias at the 5:28 mark of the third quarter to make it 7-3 before Carley Scholz (Sr., Mountain View, Calif.) terminated the Gators 4-0 scoring outburst by burying a natural goal with 4:25 remaining in the third frame to move the Mustangs back within three at 7-4.
- However, Hayley Suraci (Sr., Boca Raton, Fla.) shook her defender at 1:58 to make it 8-4 – and net the eventual game-winning score – before Cal Poly delivered a response at 1:41 via a volley by Gabi Fabri (Sr., West Sacramento, Calif.) to make it 8-5 heading into the final seven minutes of the fourth quarter.
- Similar to a great closer in baseball, Campbell saved her best stuff to the final run as she made five of her saves in the third quarter and added three more over the final quarter to allow her team to escape with a 9-7 win and have a chance to become the first team East of Michigan State to ever capture a Women’s National Collegiate Club crown.
- Stephanie Zwicker (Gr., Orlando, Fla.) capped off Florida’s scoring by converting on a six-on-five opportunity at 6:31 of the fourth quarter to provide Campbell and the rest of the Gators some breathing room.
- The score would be helpful down the stretch as the Mustangs broke out of the gate after Iglesias’ fourth strike to put away penalty shot (3:09) and man-up (2:21) chances by Maddie David (So., Pleasanton, Calif.) and Annie Ritcey (Fr., Mercer Island, Wash.), respectively, to put Cal Poly on the doorstep of a dramatic comeback by moving within 9-7.
- However, Campbell proved the difference during the waning moments of the contest as the Florida netminder and her defenders stifled the Cal Poly shooters the rest of the way to punch the program’s ticket to its third National Championship appearance.
- For Florida, Iglesias (four) and Martin (three) both posted hat-tricks or better, while Suraci and Zwicker nailed solo markers as the Gators converted on six-of-11 advantage opportunities – including four penalty shots.
- Cal Poly, which misses out on the program’s 13th National Championship berth after finishing as the runner-up in 2002, 2007, 2012, 2017 and 2018, received three goals from Milton and solo tallies by David, Scholz, Fabri and Ritcey.
- Mustangs’ goalie Sammi Tovani (Jr., Danville, Calif.) made six saves in taking the loss.
- Due to the defeat, Cal Poly will play for Third Place at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, May 5, against San Diego State. A win will tie for Cal Poly’s lowest finish in the history of the Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship as the squad placed Third in 2012 – and never lower.
|1st Q||2nd Q||3rd Q||4th Q||–||FINAL|
|University of Florida||3||3||2||1||–||9|
|Cal Poly State University||1||2||2||2||–||7|
|Cal Poly Goals:||Emily Milton (3); Maddie David; Gabi Fabri; Annie Ritcey; Carley Scholz|
|Florida Goals:||Phoebe Iglesias (4); Kelly Martin (3); Hayley Suraci; Stephanie Zwicker|
|Saves:||Cal Poly – Sammi Tovani (6) ; Florida – Mary Campbell (14)|
|Exclusions:||Cal Poly – 11 ; Florida – 6|
|Advantage Opportunities:||Cal Poly – 3-for-6 ; Florida – 6-for-11|
|Sprints:||Cal Poly – 2-for-4 (1st, 3rd) ; Florida – 2-for-4 (2nd, 4th)|
|Officials:||Greg Sanchez; Tim Watson|
The University of Florida’s Hayley Suraci (#13) breaks up a scoring try by California Polytechnic State University’s Gabi Fabri (#9) as goalie Mary Campbell (#1) defends
California Polytechnic State University’s Gabi Fabri (#9) defends the University of Florida’s Jessica Modrak (#8)
The University of Florida’s Hayley Suraci (#13) attempts a steal against California Polytechnic State University’s Sanam Ghazvini (#7)