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FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Ohio State women’s soccer team topped Florida Gulf Coast, 1-0, on Haley Walker-Robinson’s 108th minute game-winner Sunday evening in Fort Myers, Fla. With the win, the Buckeyes remain unbeaten at 4-0-0 while the Eagles drop to 1-2-0.
After the match remained scoreless through regulation and a first overtime period, the freshman from Vista, Calif., finished from six yards out after Nichelle Prince beat a pair of Florida Gulf Coast defenders and centered a perfect cross from the right wing to give the Buckeyes the overtime victory.
"I am so proud of our team," Lori Walker, Ohio State head coach, said. "We battled a well-organized team for 108 long, hot minutes. We played from our hearts and as a team and it's been a great trip to Florida to collect two wins. The depth of our fitness and ability to rotate players made all of the difference. Our senior leadership carried us through to an emotional overtime win on the road."
Florida Gulf Coast had an opportunity less than three minutes into the match when Tabby Tindell snuck in behind the Ohio State defense but Buckeye goalkeeper Jillian McVicker came out to make the save on the one-on-one opportunity.
The Buckeyes almost took the lead in the ninth minute when Nikki Walts blasted a free kick from 25 yards out but Florida Gulf Coast goalkeeper Melissa Weck was there to deflect the ball over the crossbar and keep the match scoreless.
Ohio State continued to press forward, controlling possession for much of the first half but the match remained scoreless after the first 45 minutes.
For the half, Florida Gulf Coast held a 6-3 lead in shots with both teams putting two on frame. Ohio State held a 4-2 lead in corners over the first 45 minutes.
The Eagles earned an opportunity in the 65th minute when a cross played in from the right wing found Meaghan Mulligan but the shot from 10 yards sailed over the crossbar.
Walts then had another chance for the Buckeyes from long range in the 67th minute but the shot narrowly missed wide right.
Three minutes later, Walts played a long ball down the right wing toward Prince but the shot from the senior was deflected wide by Weck as the match remained scoreless.
Ohio State earned a pair of late corner kicks over the final three minutes but were unable to do anything with them as the match headed to overtime scoreless.
Through regulation, Florida Gulf Coast held a 10-6 lead in shots, including 4-3 on goal, while the Buckeyes held a 7-4 advantage in corner kicks.
After a quiet first overtime period, Emma Firenze played a left-footed corner toward the center of the box in the 102nd minute but Prince’s header just drifted wide right.
Three minutes later, Walker-Robinson finished off her first collegiate goal to give the Buckeyes’ the double-overtime win.
For the match, the Eagles held an 11-8 lead in shots with each team putting four on frame. Ohio State held an 8-4 advantage in corner kicks. McVicker made four saves as Ohio State earned its second clean sheet of the season.
Ohio State continues its road swing at nationally-ranked Virginia Tech at 7 p.m. Thursday.
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