PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The second-seeded Johnson & Wales University women's soccer team scored a pair of goals in an eight-minute plus span to defeat visiting sixth seed Simmons College, 2-0, this evening in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship Tournament Semifinals at Scotts Miracle-Gro Athletics Complex in Providence, R.I. The Sharks end their season with a 10-7-2 record, while the Wildcats improve to 17-3-1 and advance to the Championship match on November 4 vs. top-seeded Lasell College, which downed number four seed Saint Joseph's College (Maine), 3-1.
Johnson & Wales dominated possession during the match, holding a commanding 19-4 shot advantage and a 9-2 margin on corner kicks.
Despite the Wildcats outshooting Simmons, 10-1, in the opening half, the Sharks defense held strong and the teams went into the intermission without a goal on the board.
First year Olivia Cairrao (Bristol, RI) put Johnson & Wales on the board in the 52nd minute when she took a through ball from senior Kyra Selner (Sterling, Va.) and deposited a shot into the bottom corner for a 1-0 edge. The Wildcats added an insurance goal just over eight minutes later when junior Deja Hursey (Columbia, Md.) found the back of the net for her team-leading 23rd goal of the year. She used a header to put a shot on net and saw the try ricochet into the net off a Simmons defender at 59:28 of the second stanza.
The Sharks received a shot from four different players, including a shot on frame from junior midfielder Cíara Forde (Quincy, Mass.) to pace the offense.
Senior goalie Casey Halle (Watertown, Mass.) closed out her career with seven saves for Simmons, while sophomore keeper Colleen Lynch (New Milford, Conn.) stopped the only shot she faced for Johnson & Wales.