The Murray State women’s soccer team is heading to the 2017 NCAA soccer tournament after Miyah Watford scored in overtime to defeat Eastern Kentucky 1-0 in the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament championship game played at MSU’s Cutchin Field in Murray, Kentucky.
In the 93rd minute of a scoreless match against the EKU Colonels, the Racers earned a corner kick. Harriet Withers sent a cross into the box that was initially headed by Nyomi Devine. Watford picked up the headed ball, which pinged off the crossbar, and sent a contested shot in for her sixth goal of the year and second of the OVC tournament. It was Murray State’s first goal off a corner kick in 109 tries this season.
“We’ve been unlucky on corners all year, we had chances against SIUE and EIU to score on a corner. I’m really happy this was the one that went in,” said head coach Jeremy Groves who picked up his 50th career win with the Racers, putting him at 50-20-6 all-time at Murray State in his four years.
The Racers limited EKU to just five shots while allowing nothing to reach Alex Steigerwald. This is the first game all year the Racers have prevented a shot from going on net. Murray State peppered EKU with 17 shots and 13 getting on target.
The Racers will be watching the 2017 NCAA selection show at Mr. B’s on Monday, November 6. The show starts at 3:30 p.m, and all are welcome to support the Racers as they see who they’ll face in the NCAA Tournament.
Murray State has been to the NCAA tournament once with Groves, with a trip in 2015 where they lost 1-0 to Ole Miss in the first round. The Racers’ first trip to the NCAAs was in 2009 when they played at Virginia Tech and lost 2-0.
Today’s hard-fought OVC championship match was the second meeting between the two teams after their first meeting ended in a 1-1 tie at EKU on Oct. 5. Murray State moves to 15-1-2 overall while EKU ends their season 11-5-4.
The Racers put four players on the OVC All-Tournament Team with Watford being named MVP. Joining her on the OVC team was Caroline Ashton, Destiny White and Lyssie Wright.
2017 OVC All-Tournament Team
Mary Francis Hoots, Tennessee Tech
Lauren Brewer, Tennessee Tech
Lauren Kaempfe, Southeast Missouri
Esmie Gonzales, Southeast Missouri
Anna Hall, Eastern Kentucky
Allison Werner, Eastern Kentucky
Haley Kemper, Eastern Kentucky
Caroline Ashton, Murray State
Destiny White, Murray State
Lyssie Wright, Murray State
Miyah Watford, Murray State (MVP)
Murray State Media Relations Intern