[FLORIDA STATE-TEXAS A&M 2-1] Jessica Price's golden goal sent Florida State to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament with a 2-1 win over Texas A&M Friday night in front of a packed crowd at the Seminole Soccer Complex.
Price took a pass from Tiffany McCarty and made a strong run into the box. With three Aggie defenders crowding the space in front of the net, Price made a series of moves to her left running toward the far sideline before slotting a low-liner inside the left post from about four yards out. The goal was her fourth of the tournament and third game-winning tally this postseason.
After both teams played to a scoreless first half, Texas A&M broke through with the game's first goal in the 55th minute as Rachel Shipley belted a shot from the top of the box which caromed off the left post and into the back of net for her ninth goal of the season. Nora Skelton began the scoring chance for the Aggies as her initial shot from 20 yards hit of the crossbar. The Seminoles tried to clear the loose ball with a series of headers but the ball found the foot of Shipley who one-timed the shot to give A&M the one-goal lead.
The Seminoles evened the game at a goal a piece in the 65th minute as Lauren Switzer capitalized on a beautiful header from five yards out. The senior midfielder timed her run perfectly on great ball played by Casey Short from the left side of the pitch. Short sent a deep cross toward the right post where Switzer was able to redirect the shot passed Aggie keeper Kristin Arnold and inside the left post for her second goal of the season.
McCarty tried to give the Seminoles the lead in the 70th minute taking on a slew of Aggie defenders. The sophomore forward made a series of crafty moves in the Seminoles attacking third before bending a shot toward the near post from 17 yards out that was saved by Arnold.
Switzer and McCarty tried to hook up for the go ahead goal with just over five minutes left in regulation. Switzer attempted to bend a shot inside the left post from about the same distance as her first goal, but Arnold dove to her right and deflected the ball just enough before an Aggie defender rushed in and kicked the ball out of harms way.
That would be the final scoring chance for either team as the game would go to overtime. McCarty came within inches of closing out the game in the first overtime period but sent a shot just wide of the right post. Tori Huster generated the scoring chance sending a ball off a Texas A&M defender that deflected back towards the net. McCarty got to the ball first, took a quick touch to her right and tried to beat Arnold to the far post but her shot slipped wide.
Becky Edwards sent a header on goal with just seconds remaining in the first overtime off a Florida State throw-in, but a save by Arnold sent the game into a second overtime period.
The Seminoles finished the game with the advantage in both shots (21-8) and corners (10-3) on Friday night. The FSU defense did its part to limit Texas A&M's chances in overtime by not allowing the Aggies to register a shot in both periods.
Price's goal was the third golden goal scored by the Seminoles this year and the first in the NCAA Tournament since Sanna Talonen's diving header in double overtime beat Connecticut 3-2 in a 2007 quarterfinal match-up in Tallahassee.
Friday night's victory kept FSU perfect at home in the NCAA Tournament improving to 18-0-0 all-time. The win also extended the Seminoles school record home winning streak to 18 straight. Friday night's win also marked the first time this year the Seminoles won a game in which their opponents scored first (1-4-0).
Florida State advances to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament for the fifth year in a row and for the sixth time in school history. The Seminoles will face Notre Dame next week as the game time and site of competition as yet to be determined. The Fighting Irish defeated Oregon State on Friday 1-0. Fans are encouraged to check back with Seminoles.com to find out the time and location of the Seminoles' quarterfinal game.