The Darton College women’s soccer team celebrates after winning their NJCAA National Championship semifinal match in double overtime Friday in Melbourne, Fla. (Darton College/Special to The Herald)
MELBOURNE, Fla. — Darton College women’s soccer coach Ken Veilands called it Thursday.
“I told (you guys at The Herald) that if we were sloppy and unorganized on defense, that we would get burned,” he said. “It almost happened.”
The key word there is “almost.”
Instead, the No. 4 nationally ranked Lady Cavs turned a 1-0 deficit in the second half into a 2-1 double overtime win against No. 2-ranked and previously unbeaten Scottsdale (Ariz.) on Friday during the semifinal round of the NJCAA Division I National Championships, vaulting Darton back to the title game for the first time since they fell one win short of the crown in 2005.
“We put our heads down when they scored on us early, but when we tied the game, we got out confidence back that we could still win,” Veilands said.
Darton’s Kelly Polk, a Lee County native, headed in the equalizer with about 20 minutes to play in the second half on a corner kick, which eventually forced overtime. In overtime, it was Sashanna Campbell scoring the game-winner.
The Lady Cavs will now play Tyler, Texas — the No. 1 team in the nation, which beat Darton, 4-1, in the second game of the year — in the finals Sunday at 2 p.m.
DARTON MEN FALL:
The No. 1 Darton men’s soccer team lost, 2-0, in the second half the NJCAA semifinals late Friday night to Monroe (N.Y.) CC as the game ended just before The Herald’s press time.
For a recap, log onto albanyherald.com.