KSU Turns Back the Clock; Returns to A-Sun Final

A-Sun Insider: The Comeback Kid; Nicole Calder

FORT MYERS, Fla. - Kennesaw State's Khatra Mahdi sent the Owls back to the Atlantic Sun Women's Soccer Championship Final as her double-overtime goal in the 107th minute delivered the win for the sixth-seeded Owls vs. No. 2 Lipscomb. 

The Owls become the second-ever No. 6 seed to reach the A-Sun Championship Final with the previous occurence coming in 2011. KSU owns two A-Sun Championship titles with victories coming in 2007 and 2009. It will mark KSU's third-ever appearance in the A-Sun Championship Final.

The opening half mirrored the Owls - Bisons regular-season meeting on Sept. 27th as neither managed a goal. Kennesaw State held the shot advantage, 4-2, with only one finding frame as Julia Nelson tested Anna Buhigas in the 41st minute.

In the second period, Lipscomb managed all three of its shots on frame in regulation, but KSU's Olivia Sturdivant stopped the attempts. KSU continued its onslaught of shots with eight in the period with two being saved by Anna Buhigas.

With a scoreless tie at the end of regulation, the match headed into overtime for the first A-Sun Championship Semifinal overtime match since 2011; seven semifinal overtime matches have been played over the past 10 years.

Neither team managed a goal in the opening extra period before Mahdi netted her second goal of the postseason as the freshman forward registered a goal in the 5-0 first round win vs. Jacksonville.

KSU improved to 8-10-1 with the victory as Olivia Sturdivant pushed her record to 6-7, Lipscomb fell to 10-7-2 with the loss.

Kennesaw State advances to face the winner of FGCU and Northern Kentucky in the second A-Sun Championship Semifinal. The Atlantic Sun Women's Soccer Championship Final takes place on Sunday, Nov. 9th at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN3.

Match Minute Report
1' to 15' - KSU led the early attack with a 3-0 shot advantage, but none found the frame. Owls held advantage with three corner kicks. Baylee Linnell and Ellen Lundy subbed in for Lipscomb

16' to 30' - Lipscomb's Linnell posted shot in 21st minute that sailed wide right. Additional subs for Lipscomb included Caroline Chadwell and Emily Rogers. KSU's Khatra Mahdi entered game in 29th minute. 

31' to 45' - First shot on goal of the game came from KSU's Julian Nelson saved by Anna Buhigas in 41st minute. Lipscomb controlled majority of last portion of half with three corner kicks, but only one shot. Bisons' best chance came on free kick near midfield played into the box.

HALFTIME BREAKDOWN - Lipscomb 0,  Kennesaw State 0
Corner Kicks: Lipscomb 3, KSU 3; Fouls: Lipscomb 5, KSU 3; Offside: Lipscomb 1, KSU 0; Shots: Lipscomb 2, KSU 4; Shots on Goal: Lipscomb 0, KSU 1; Saves: Lipscomb 1, KSU 0

46' to 60' - Action picked up in second half as KSU's Alma Gardarsdottir nearly with a goal in 58th minute but missed wide; Lipscomb's Anna Lail's attempt in 53rd minute saved by Olivia Sturdivant. KSU's Maggie Gaughan recevied yellow card in 59th.

61' to 75' - Only one shot came from Lipscomb in second portion of second half from the foot of Linnell; KSU's Gardarsdottir shot near post was saved by Buhigas in 63rd minute. KSU led 15-minute portion with three shots to one. Bisons made six subs during period, while Owls brought on Mahdi in 68th minute.

75' to 90' - Gardarsdottir's second shot on goal came in the 79th minute as Buhigas earned her third save. Both teams managed three shtos each in final 15 minutes with KSU tallying two in final minute of regulation. KSU's Sturdivant totaled two saves on shots from Carolyn Springsteen ('78) Natalie DuBoise ('83).

END OF REGULATION BREAKDOWN - Lipscomb 0,  Kennesaw State 0
Corner Kicks: Lipscomb 6, KSU 4; Fouls: Lipscomb 6, KSU 10; Offside: Lipscomb 4, KSU 0; Shots: Lipscomb 7, KSU 12; Shots on Goal: Lipscomb 3, KSU 3; Saves: Lipscomb 3, KSU 3

91' to 100' - KSU's Maggie Gaughan's attempt in 96th minute saved by Buhigas, while Nelson sent shot wide left in 97th minute. Lipscomb earned corner kick in opening minute of overtime.

101' to 107' -
 KSU's Brittney Reed hit post in 103rd minute and sent another shot wide the following minute. Anna Lail's shot in 106th minute went high.

GOAL - 107' - Kennesaw State 1, Lipscomb 0
Khatra Mahdi received ball from Julia Nelson from middle of field; Mahdi travelled down left side to score double overtime game winner. 

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