Charles Nailen/The Hoya Sophomore Courtney Shaub set up the game-winning goal against the Wildcats.

A curse was lifted from the Georgetown women’s soccer team Wednesday when it defeated Mid-Atlantic divisional rival Villanova 2-1 at Harbin Field. After seven consecutive fruitless tries against the Wildcats, the Hoyas finally prevailed in a dramatic fashion when sophomore midfielder Jen Choiniere scored the game-winning goal with three minutes left in overtime.

“The monkey is now off our back,” Head Coach Diane Drake said. “For seven games, we had never won against Villanova, but we finally got it.”

At the 101st minute of the game, ailing sophomore forward Courtney Shaub faked out three Villanova defenders and sent a cross pass to a swarm of players in the goal box. Choiniere found the ball and kicked it past goalie Janel Schilling for her first goal of the season.

“Courtney was sick today with a stomach flu, but she won the game for us,” Drake said.

While Shaub proved that she could play with illness, Choiniere proved that she is by no means experiencing a sophomore slump. Choiniere, Georgetown’s co-leader in goals last season with eight, changed this year from forward to right midfielder, a position that demands less offensive production. However, she did not mind getting her first goal.

“It felt great to get back in there like last season,” Choiniere said.

Georgetown started off the game slowly, allowing Villanova to dictate the early tempo. As the half went on, the Hoyas picked up their pace and attacked the Wildcat defense. Their offensive pressure finally cracked Villanova’s defense when sophomore midfielder Alyssa Conlow found the back of the net at the 26-minute mark. Junior forward Karin Ostrander delivered a bouncing cross pass from the left side to Conlow just out of the reach of the goalie for Conlow’s second goal of the year and the 1-0 lead.

Tension mounted at the end of the first half as Villanova mounted an offensive charge, barely missing a couple opportunities. At the 40-minute mark, Georgetown senior goalkeeper Shereena Chang dove to stop a cross pass from reaching a Wildcat player for what would have been an easy goal.

In the first half, Georgetown’s pressure led to six corner kicks compared to Villanova’s one. Both teams broke even with five shots.

Though the Hoyas managed to escape the first half unscathed, the Wildcats attacked early into the second half. Off a Villanova corner kick two minutes into the half, Chang stood calm within a flurry of activity in the goal box, making a couple nice saves.

The Hoya defense had trouble clearing the ball out of its side of the field, giving the Wildcats chances to penetrate. At the 58:57 mark of the game, Villanova finally capitalized; Quinn Sellers took the rebound off a missed shot from teammate Patricia isciagna and put it past Chang for her Big East-leading sixth goal of the season.

The game’s tough, physical tempo took a toll on both teams as the latter part of the second half consisted of a lot of long balls and little organization. Villanova was tagged for 21 fouls during the game compared to Georgetown’s 10.

Junior defender Liza Yanuzzi was issued a yellow card for a hard tackle with 9:23 left in the half. However, that did little to stop her intense defensive approach as she came up with a hard, game-saving tackle on a Villanova breakaway with seven minutes to go.

The Hoyas did have a scoring opportunity in the last minute of regulation. Wildcat goalie Schilling went way out of position to retrieve a ball, but Georgetown could not organize itself in time to take advantage of the empty net.

In overtime, Villanova once again began a period strongly as it attacked the net. Two minutes into the extra session, the Wildcats almost ended the game off a corner kick, but Chang got enough of the ball to deflect it away from the goal.

The Hoyas got a scare in the 95th minute when Ostrander hit the ground hard from a sliding tackle. While she was being attended to, Villanova’s head coach was assessed a yellow card for arguing the foul. Ostrander walked off the field under her own power.

Villanova out-shot Georgetown 13-9, while the Hoyas bested their opponents in corner kicks, 9-7.

“Villanova is our closest match in terms of style and level of players, which makes for a good match-up,” Drake said.

With the victory, the Hoyas improve their overall record to 5-3 and their Big East record to 1-2. Villanova falls to 5-2-1, 0-2 for the year.

The women’s soccer team will play host to Mid-Atlantic divisional team Rutgers on Friday at 4 p.m.

Team Schedules/Rosters 2001 Women’s Soccer Schedule | Roster

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