LA JOLLA, Calif. - Sixteenth-ranked Concordia University cruised past Chico State, 3-0, in the first round of the 2017 NCAA Division II Women's Soccer Championship at Triton Soccer Stadium on Friday afternoon.
The fifth-seeded Cavaliers, out of Portland, Ore., advance to the second round to face top-seeded and third-ranked host University of California San Diego this Sunday, Nov. 12. Kickoff at Triton Soccer Stadium in La Jolla is set for 2 p.m.
Concordia, making its NCAA Championship debut in its first season of eligibility, improved to 16-3-1 overall. Fourth-seeded Chico State had its campaign ended 11-6-2. The Wildcats had entered on an eight-match unbeaten streak at 6-0-2.
The Cavaliers jumped on the scoreboard early, going up 1-0 at the 2:02 mark courtesy of junior forward Sydney Van Steenberge. Gabrielle Ewing's right-sided cross was headed on by Kyra Radcliffe around the top of the penalty area, and the ball wound up on the right foot of Van Steenberge, who snuck her shot from the left diagonal past Wildcat goalkeeper Claire Abele, and perhaps through her legs. Abele was one of four freshmen in 17th-year head coach Kim Sutton's starting lineup.
At 22:22, it was 2-0 Concordia, again through Van Steenberge, who upped her season total to eight, now tied with Ewing for the team lead. Junior Kasey Ames flipped the ball to the left diagonal of the penalty area, and Steenberge did the rest, exquisitely looping her right-footed attempt into the upper right, where Abele had no chance at it.
The result in very little doubt by then, the Cavaliers iced it entirely with 96 seconds remaining, Brenda Uribe punching it home right-footed into the bottom left corner from the top of the penalty area for her third of 2017. Michaela Prothe was credited with the assist.
Sophomore Anna Miller had three saves for her 10th individual shutout. Abele wound up with four stops.
For Chico State, it was a first NCAA Championship appearance since 2011.
UC San Diego and Concordia (OR) have never met in women's soccer. Parking is free on North Campus on Sunday. For those unable to attend, a high-definition video stream is available for free on UCSDtritons.tv, with Miles Himmel calling the action.