Capital's first-round matchup will take place this Saturday, Nov. 15 in Grantham, Pa. The winner of the Capital-Gettysburg match will take on the winner of host Messiah and Brooklyn College (N.Y.) in the second round on Sunday, Nov. 16. Saturday's match will begin at 1:30 p.m. at legendary Shoemaker Field. The winners of Saturday's matches will play Sunday at 5 p.m. for the right to advance to the Round of 16.
Regular Season and OAC Tournament Journey
The Crusaders (16-5-1 overall) captured their third Ohio Athletic Conference Tournament Championship in the last four seasons this past Sunday, defeating Baldwin Wallace in the tournament finals at Bernlohr Stadium, 4-1.
With the win, Capital earned its sixth bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament in program history, and punched its third ticket to the NCAA Tournament under fourth-year head coach Chris Kouns.
After beginning their 2014 campaign as the No. 14 team in all of Division III (NSCAA), the Crusaders registered three straight victories over nonconference opponents to open the season.
The Crusaders hosted their annual Capital Invitational Tournament at Bernlohr Stadium for their opening slate of home games at the beginning of September, defeating the Milwaukee School of Engineering (Wis.) 4-3, before suffering their first loss of the year in a 2-1 defeat to Allegheny College (Pa.).
Capital then split its next four games defeating Waynesburg University (Pa.) 2-1 at home and Agnes Scott (Ga.) in shutout fashion, before falling to No. 6 Carnegie Mellon University (Pa.) 1-0 and Emory University (Ga.) 3-1.
The final two games of the Crusaders nonconference schedule featured a pair of victories, which ignited a six-game unbeaten streak that carried over into the initial portion of the OAC regular season schedule.
Over that span, Capital posted a 5-0-1 record, while outscoring its opponents 12-1 in the five victories. The one draw came in a double overtime match at crosstown rival Otterbein.
Capital's first loss in nearly a month came on Oct. 18 against Ohio Northern University, as the Crusaders surrendered the lone goal of the game in the 11th minute.
In the Crusaders largest margin of victory against Marietta on Oct. 21, they tallied three first half scores en route to a 7-0 shutout victory on the road. Freshman midfielder Amanda Kachaylo (Moon Township, Pa.) recorded five points in the win, tallying a pair of goals to accompany her first half assist.
Following a double overtime loss at John Carroll University, the Crusaders rebounded nicely to end the regular season, defeating Heidelberg University and Baldwin Wallace University by a combined score of 7-2 to earn the No. 3 seed heading into OAC Tournament play.
The Crusaders win their second straight OAC Tournament
In the OAC Tournament, Capital hosted No. 6 seeded John Carroll in a quarterfinal match, defeating the Blue Streaks in overtime, 1-0. Johnson found the back of the net in the 95th minute for the game's lone goal, tapping in a shot off a rebounded ball from the Blue Streaks' goalkeeper.
Next up in the conference tournament was a trip to Ada, Ohio, where the Crusaders faced No. 2 seeded Ohio Northern, a team that handed Capital one of its two losses in OAC regular season play. Again it was Johnson with the late game heroics, as her score in 72nd minute proved to be the decisive goal in a 1-0 victory which sent Capital to the OAC Tournament finals for the third time in the last four seasons.
Capital hosted the OAC Tournament Championship at Bernlohr Stadium, as No. 4 seed Baldwin Wallace defeated the No. 1 seed Otterbein on the road to advance to the title game. The Crusaders offense caught fire just two minutes into the contest, as Johnson again ignited Capital with her first of two goals on the afternoon. Just over one minute later, junior defender Morgan Austin (Jeromesville, Ohio) increased Capital's lead to 2-0 with her first goal of the season.
After freshman defender Mary Bushee (San Marcos, Calif.) scored her sixth goal of the year, Johnson netted her second goal of the game in the 68th minute, before the Crusaders surrendered their first goal in three games. They went on to defeat Baldwin Wallace 4-1 and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Sophomores in forward Becca Cartmill (Temecula, Calif.) and midfielder Claire Quinn (Coto de Caza, Calif.), as well as Kachaylo and junior attack Emily Krause (Macedonia, Ohio) each tallied an assist in the win.
Leaders for Capital
|Becca Cartmill, So., F|
|Amanda Kachaylo, Fr., M|
Leading the way for Capital so far this season is Cartmill, who leads the team and places fourth in the OAC in points (24), and is tied for second in assists (8) and sixth in goals (8).
Kachaylo follows close behind, having tied for fifth in the conference in points (21), sixth in goals (8), and seventh in assists (5).
Johnson's late-season surge on offense has propelled her into the top 10 in the OAC in points (18) and goals (8).
A total of six Capital players have totaled at least 10 points this season, while seven players have tallied three or more goals on the year.
Junior goalkeeper Kim Leitch (Rocky River, Ohio) has also played a key role in bolstering the Crusaders defense this season, as she has solidified herself as one of the top goalkeepers in the conference. Leitch currently places in the top four in the OAC in goals against (14), goals-against average (0.78) and save percentage (.837). In addition, she has posted a 14-3-1 record in goal, tallying seven shutouts along the way.
As a team, the Crusaders lead the OAC in goals scored (49), assists (32) and shots on goal (196). Capital posted a 9-3-0 record at home and 7-2-1 record on the road during the 2014 season.
Gettysburg (13-4-1 overall) comes into the NCAA Tournament having earned an at-large bid after capturing the Centennial Conference regular season title and earning the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament.
The 13-win season for the Bullets this year is the program's most wins since 2006. Gettysburg capped of its regular season winning nine straight matches, including seven shutouts, outscoring its opponents by a combined margin of 16-2 over that span.
After earning a first round bye and hosting a semifinal match in the conference tournament, the Bullets fell 2-0 to Swarthmore in the Centennial Conference Tournament semifinals this past Saturday. The loss was just the fourth time all season and first time in 12 games that Gettysburg failed to post a goal.
The Centennial Conference is one of the top women's soccer conferences in all of Division III this season, as Johns Hopkins and Gettysburg have each earned their way into the latest NSCAA/NCAA Top 25 Poll.
Gettysburg currently ranks No. 19 in the national poll and is fifth in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Although the Bullets have no common opponents with Capital during the 2014 regular season, they did host defending National Champion William Smith (N.Y.) in a game which the Bullets lost 1-0. William Smith defeated Capital in the 2013 national semifinals.
Leaders for Gettysburg
Leading the way so far this year for Gettysburg is junior forward Lauren Schapiro (Stamford, Conn.), who leads the team and places in the top 10 in the conference in points (14), goals (5) and assists (4).
Fellow forward in senior Georgia Ferguson (Bethel, Conn.) follows, tying for 14th in the conference in points (11) and 10th in goals (5).
Junior goalkeeper Eliza Gray (South Orange, N.J.) has also played a key role in the Bullets reaching the NCAA Tournament, ranking in the top 10 in the conference in goals-against average (0.63), goals against (11) and save percentage (.771). She has posted a 13-4-0 record in goal, having shutout nine opponents in the process.
As a team, the Bullets place in the top five in the Centennial Conference in goals allowed (11), goals scored (31) and shots (283). Gettysburg registered a 7-2-0 record at home and 6-2-1 record on the road throughout the 2014 season.