GEORGETOWN, Texas — Before its match against the University of Dallas Crusaders, the Southwestern University Pirates women's soccer team celebrated its seniors. A game-winning, overtime goal by senior forward Kierstyn Luckock ensured the celebration would last long into the night.
Southwestern had plenty of opportunities all match, more than doubling Dallas in shots with a 24-10 advantage. Crusaders' goalie Olivia Severson provided a brilliant performance, though, saving 11 of the Pirates' 12 shots on goal.
The Pirates attacked in a variety of ways, getting deft footwork in front of the net from Hallie Rutherford, who finished with five shots and four on goal, or crosses for opportunistic shots from Luckock or Maya Fuller.
In the end, the Dallas defense didn't break so much as it wore out.
Not quite five minutes into overtime, junior Mallory Harkins shot the gap on a passing lane near mid-field, stepping in front of a Crusader to intercept a long pass. Weaving her way through a slalom of exhausted Dallas players, Harkins delivered a perfectly weighted pass to Luckock, threading the ball between the backline defenders and the goalie.
Luckock, running at a full sprint to race Severson for the ball, made a sliding kick to nudge the ball past the goalie for the golden goal.
"It feels really good to have my first goal of my senior year on senior night," Luckock said. "Mallory came flying down the field between two players, I saw that backside run and she played a spot-on ball and I slid and luckily it went into the back of the net."
It was an opportunity for redemption for Luckock, who worked her way towards a clean look in the first half only to see her booming shot ricochet off the crossbar.
"After it hit the crossbar, Hallie [Rutherford] joked I was the most unlucky player, which is funny because my nickname is Lucky," Luckcock said.
The Pirates were also fortunate to have Mary Cardone at goalie, getting six key saves for Southwestern with four coming in the second half.
With the win, the Pirates improve to 10-5-0 on the season and 8-3-0 in conference play, sitting in second place with one regular season match remaining against Austin College on Sunday.