YPSILANTI, Mich.—It appeared that Miami University’s soccer team would play to its third overtime draw in four matches, but a dramatic finish catapulted the RedHawks to a 1-0 double-overtime win at Eastern Michigan University on Sunday afternoon.
With just 1:18 to go in the second overtime, junior midfielder Kelsey Dinges sent a ball across the box from the end line to senior midfielder Kayla Zakrzewski, who collected the game-winner for the RedHawks (6-6-2; 3-1-2 Mid-American Conference) as she sent the ball past the Eastern Michigan goalkeeper to the back of the net for the lone goal of the game at 108:42.
It was the 10th career game-winning goal for Zakrzewski and her third of the season.
"To come up here and get a draw (against Western Michigan on Friday) and a win against (Eastern Michigan), the two top teams in the MAC, says a lot about our team’s character,” said head coach Bobby Kramig. “We've had our share of struggles this year, but our team is resilient and we just keep on working and trying to get a little bit better every day.
"Hats off to our defense who has produced shutouts in three consecutive games,” added Kramig. “To go from allowing nearly three goals per game to shutouts in four of six MAC games is a tribute to our defense and Coach (Hugh) Seyfarth."
Senior goalkeeper Allison Norenberg posted her 18th career shutout, after breaking the Miami career shutout record on Friday in a 0-0 double-overtime tie at Western Michigan. Norenberg had six saves against a pesky EMU offense that tallied 20 total shots for the game. The Eagles dropped to 7-6-1 overall and 4-2-0 in MAC play.
"Eastern Michigan is a fine team and outplayed us for long periods of the second half,” said Kramig. “While I thought we were dangerous on counters, I would have liked to have seen us do a better job keeping the ball."
Miami had four shots on goal for the game, two each from Zakrzewski and senior forward Katy Dolesh. After matching the Eagles with seven shots in the opening period, Miami mustered just one shot in the second period and also in the first overtime. Zakrzewski took both of the RedHawks’ shots in the second overtime and both were on-goal with the latter resulting in the goal that ended the deadlock.
Miami returns to Oxford for a three-match homestand beginning with a 4 p.m. match against Northern Illinois on Friday, Oct. 18. The RedHawks then host Toledo at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 20 and Central Michigan at 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25.