By Bud Denega
WHEATON, Ill. — The 17th-ranked Ohio Northern women's soccer team's memorable 2019 season came to an end Friday. The Polar Bears fell to No. 25 Carnegie Mellon (Pa.) 3-0 in the third round of the NCAA Tournament at Joe Bean Stadium on the campus of Wheaton College.
ONU fell down 2-0 in the opening half, but created more scoring opportunities in the final 45 minutes. The Polar Bears registered six of their seven shots, one of which was on target, and all three corner kicks after halftime.
Junior Jenna Fuller (Countryside, Ill./Lyons Township) recorded a team-high four shots for Northern. Senior Haley Moses (Mason), sophomore Emma Barney (Oak Harbor) and freshman Lauren Naso (Grosse Ile, Mich.) had the other three shots.
Senior goaltender Meagan Grierson (Dayton/Miamisburg) ended her historic career with six saves Friday. That gave her 205 for her career, which ranks sixth in school history.
The Tartans logged 15 shots in the game, nine of which were on frame.
Rachel Legg boasted the first goal for Carnegie Mellon. She scored, unassisted, in 24th minute.
Julianne Tippett had the second goal. She found the back of the net on a header, off a feed from Tara Durstewitz, in the 41st minute.
Durstewitz closed the scoring with an unassisted goal in the 62nd minute.
Andrea Sipos played 73 minutes in net for the Tartans, while Carolyn Botz played the final 17 minutes, making one save.
The Tartans will advance to the NCAA Quarterfinals Saturday. They'll meet St. Thomas (Minn.), which toppled host Wheaton (Ill.) 4-2 in a penalty shootout.
ONU will return to Ada with many high marks for the season that was. The 2019 campaign represented the second time the program has advanced past the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
This seasons also marked the second time that the Polar Bears won both the regular-season Ohio Athletic Conference title and tournament crown. Northern went a perfect 11-0 in OAC matches.
Grierson's 12 shut outs in 2019 gave her 44 for her career, which is tops in program history. Fuller's 20 goals this season represented the most goals a Polar Bear has netted in a single seasons since 1997. Both Moses and senior Rose Nienaber (Cincinnati/Oak Hills) vaulted into the top 10 in school history with 21 and 20 career assists, respectively.
Northern finished the season at 18-3-3, having won 14 in a row at one point. They also held a 15-game unbeaten streak, which tied a school record.