The York Lions have won the Ontario University Athletics women’s soccer championship for the third time in five years after a dramatic 1-0 win over the Queen’s Gaels in a thrilling penalty kick finale to what became a goalkeeping showcase Sunday at York Stadium.
The Gaels picked up silver medals for their effort. Both teams advance to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport women’s soccer championship at the University of Toronto from Nov. 12-15.
It was the second shootout finish of the Final Four’s last day, as the Ottawa Gee-Gees captured the bronze earlier in the day against the defending OUA champion Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks.
York all-star goalkeeper Sarah Fiorini (Newmarket) was stellar in shutting out the Gaels and stopping two of four penalty kicks. Not to be outshone, Elena Corry (Hamilton) of Queen’s was equally spectacular at the other end, but the Lions shooters proved too slick as they fired home all four shots taken in the penalty kick session.
Ami Otaki (Kanagawa, Japan), Camille Pereira (Mississauga), Nicole Markowitz (Toronto) and Samantha Gauthier (Laval, Que.) had shootout goals for the Lions. Summer Rybicki (Burlington) and Brienna Shaw (Vancouver) beat Fiorini, but Angela Sullivan (Scarborough) and Chantal McFetridge (Kelowna, B.C.) were denied.
Both teams traded chances all afternoon, but Fiorini and Corry were the stars of the game. Fiorini plucked corner kicks out of the air with ease, while Corry dove on rebounds and brought the Lions to the edge. The Lions came into the game off a 1-0 win over the Gee-Gees, while the Gaels advanced after defeating the Golden Hawks 3-2 in extra time on Saturday. The Lions also won the OUA championship in 2005 and 2007.
After a tense overtime and a sixth round of penalty kicks, the Gee-Gees edged the Golden Hawks by a score of 3-2 to capture the OUA bronze medal.
Ottawa’s Catherine Scott (Pointe-Clair, Que.) opened the scoring in the ninth minute with a free kick from the top of the penalty box that sailed just over the defensive wall and beat the Laurier goalkeeper down low.
Laurier tied things up in the 57th minute, as Heather Malizia (Burlington) busted in along the wing and crossed to Julia Marchese (Oakville), who booted the ball into the open net. It was a heartbreaker for Laurier, who also lost to Queen’s in extra time on Saturday in the OUA semifinal.
Laurier’s Krista Cellucci (Mississauga) broke the stalemate in overtime for the Golden Hawks in the 11th minute. She drove to the net and bulled past Gee-Gee goalkeeper Melissa Pesant (Gatineau, Que.) and grabbed her own rebound to put her team up for the first time in the game.
Ottawa refused to roll over against the Golden Hawks. Tara Condos (Strathroy) would tie things up for Ottawa in the 27th minute of overtime to force the game to penalty kicks.
The Gee-Gees were stopped on their second penalty kick but would beat Laurier goalkeeper Tristin Vogel (Collingwood) on the rest of their attempts. McElligot managed to stop the fifth penalty kick to force it to sudden death penalty kicks.
Laurel Fougere (Halifax) had the deciding penalty kick for the Gee-Gees.