Update (11/12): After defeating St. Joseph's and Virginia Wesleyan by 5-1 and 3-0 scores, respectively, the Garnet advanced to the second weekend of the NCAA tournament. Swarthmore will travel to Vermont to play the Middlebury Panthers on Saturday, Nov. 17 at 11:00 AM.
The 22nd-ranked Swarthmore College women’s soccer team won the Centennial Conference Championship for the second season in a row, demolishing the No. 4 Johns Hopkins University Blue Jays, 5-1, on Sunday afternoon.
This is Swarthmore’s third title in the past five years with all three coming at Hopkins’s expense. The previous two had been decided by penalty shootouts, but Swarthmore left no doubt about the outcome of this year’s championship.
Forward Marin McCoy ’19, a biology major from Denver, earned tournament MVP honors after recording a goal in both the semifinal and final games.
By winning the conference championship, Swarthmore (15-2-2) automatically qualifies for the NCAA Tournament, returning to the national stage for the fifth season in a row.
Swarthmore’s five goals are the most ever in a Centennial Championship. Paired with its five goals in the semifinal game, Swarthmore also tied the league record set in 2013 for the most goals scored by a team in the tournament.
Five Garnet players scored in the win: McCoy; Swarthmore native Lizzie King ’21; Sophia Stills ’21 from Woodland Hills, Calif.; Brittany Weiderhold ’20, a biology major from Downingtown, Pa.; and Sydney Covitz ’20, an English literature and computer science honors major from Washington, D.C. All five of Swarthmore’s goals came within the first 67 minutes of the match.
Swarthmore struck early on, knocking in a goal in the fourth minute. King received a pass on the left wing, dribbled in, and took the Hopkins goalkeeper one-on-one. She cracked a left-footed shot that avoided the diving keeper and found the back of the net.
King’s goal was Swarthmore’s first shot of the game. The Garnet had limited opportunities early in the first half and didn’t record another shot until the 31st minute. McCoy’s attempt was saved then, but in the next minute, she scored her 11th goal of the season.
Swarthmore continued to attack in the remainder of the first half, and by halftime had recorded seven shots, matching Hopkins. Covitz nearly made it 3-0 in the 36th minute when she recovered a loose ball from the diving keeper. Her shot at the temporarily empty goal, however, was blocked by a defender who had quickly slid in to guard the goal line.
Stills started on the field in the second half and less than five minutes into the new period gave Swarthmore the 3-0 lead by beating the sliding keeper to the ball and finishing on the open net.
In the 61st minute, Weiderhold blasted a shot from the left wing that found twine on the far side of the goal, upper corner.
Six minutes later, King drew a foul in the box, awarding Swarthmore a penalty kick. Covitz stepped to the dot, hesitated for a bit, and then fired in her sixth goal of the year. Goalkeeper Amy Shmoys ’19, a computer science major from Ithaca, N.Y., made five saves in the contest and kept the Blue Jays off the board until the 77th minute.
The Garnet will find out their destination and opponent at 1:30 p.m. Monday during the NCAA’s selection show. The first round of the tournament will begin on Saturday.