Final chances come up short for CNU

Published 10:26 pm Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Christopher Newport senior defender Katelyn Yandle (Nansemond River) sits with her hands over her face amongst a group of her teammates and coaches a minute after the final whistle of the NCAA Tournament match at CNU Wednesday night. Visiting Lynchburg defeated CNU 1-0.

NEWPORT NEWS – From the intensity of the final seconds and one, or in this case, three last chances to keep the match and season alive, to the end of a collegiate athletic career, like that.

Christopher Newport senior Katelyn Yandle had to be hugged by a couple teammates to stay upright, then still sat on the turf field at CNU for another minute after the Lady Captains’ last gasps came up empty and Lynchburg claimed a 1-0 victory in the first round of the NCAA Div. III Field Hockey Tournament Wednesday night at CNU.

It was a back-and-forth contest, with the one-goal margin and last-second drama fitting. The Lady Hornets (17-3) outshot CNU 17-14. CNU (15-4) put 11 shots on goal to 10, to go with two more corners than LC and a missed penalty stroke by CNU.

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While Lynchburg pushed most of the play into the CNU half in the early going, both sides put together golden scoring chances.

CNU, with Yandle as one of the five defenders on opposing corners, had to fend away a couple LC corners in the first 10 minutes.

CNU’s penalty stroke came in the 15th minute. Lady Hornet keeper Tiffany Frye saved it with a dive toward the left post. Frye also made nine saves in the run of play.

Inside of four minutes left in the half, CNU back Stephanie Bair made a desperate defensive save after a Hornet forward rounded the CNU keeper near the top of the arc and flicked a backhanded shot toward the mostly empty cage.

Lynchburg gained the lead 7:36 into the second half. Melanie Tenney deflected a hard cross from Kristina Morris, putting it high into the CNU goal.

LC kept most of the action well away from its goal and arc in the closing minutes. A CNU counterattack rushed the LC circle as the clock went under a minute.

The visitors got a 16-yard hit with 0:35 left, but CNU intercepted the clearance and earned the first of three successive penalty corners, all of which coming after the clock showed 0:00.

Yandle, who plays right back and is CNU’s leading scorer this season with 14 goals and four assists, got an open look toward goal on the final corner.

Yandle played a ball, that went in the stats as a pass, from left of the penalty stroke spot, toward the near post. The pass slid by a teammate’s stick and a couple feet wide of the base of the post, bringing the final whistle.

In her high school career for Nansemond River, Yandle became and still is the school’s all-time leading goal scorer.

A fellow Lady Warrior, Breanne Lowe, is a sophomore reserve midfielder for the Lady Captains. Lowe didn’t play Wednesday but saw action in 15 matches this season.

The loss ended a fifth straight season making the NCAA Tournament by Christopher Newport.