BRIDGEWATER - Bailey Kratz scored two first-half goals to give Bridgewater the lead and the Eagles held on in the second half to defeat Washngton and Lee, 2-1, in the quarterfinals of the ODAC women's soccer tournament.
With the victory the Eagles, now 15-4-1 on the season, advance to the tournament semifinals Saturday at Virginia Wesleyan University. Bridgewater will meet the host school, the top-seeded Marlins, in the first semifinal game Saturday. Virginia Wesleyan defeated Eastern Mennonite 5-0 in Wednesday quarterfinal action. The second semifinal will pit Roanoke against Lynchburg.
Bridgewater got on the scoreboard in the 22nd minute. Keri Rager played a ball to the right side where Kratz sent a ball from outside the box toward the far post. The ball floated over the keeper's head and into the top corner of the goal to put the Eagles on top 1-0.
The Eagles were poised to take the 1-0 lead to the break, but another score from Kratz increased the margin to 2-0. Bridget Fabiani sent a ball toward Kratz at the top of the box and the ball was misplayed by the W&L defender. Kratz stroked her shot just inside the post to give the Eagles a 2-0 lead with just 20 seconds left in the first half.
Just 10 days ago, the Eagles led W&L 2-0 at the half and the Generals stormed back to tie the score at 2-2 before the Eagles won in the final minute on a goal by Isabella Krider.
Wednesday's second-half looked to be following a similar script.
The Generals took advantage of a free kick in the 57th minute to pull within one goal. Chandler Wickers took the kick from the left side, just outside of the box, and sent a line drive kick toward the far post. Bridgewater keeper Hayley Talbott got a hand on the shot, but Caroline Peters was at the post and touched the ball into the net, making the score 2-1.
Bridgewater had a chance to immediately answer the W&L score when Keri Rager broke free for a shot from the top of the box. W&L keeper Leeann Passaro blocked the shot and then blocked a second attempt as Rager tried to volley in the rebound.
The Generals threatened again four minutes later as they resumed their pressure on the Eagles with back-to-back corner kicks. On the second corner, Emily Roche sent the ball into the middle of the box where Meredith Culhane was able to get off a shot. Culhane rolled her shot past the keeper, but Catherine Haufe cleared the ball off the line to preserve the Bridgewater lead.
W&L had their best opportunity to tie the score with 10:16 left in the game when the Eagles were whistled for a foul inside the box. Danielle Spickard took the penalty kick, but the attempt missed wide, leaving the Eagles with the 2-1 advantage.
The Eagles held a slim 16-15 edge in shots while the Generals finished with a 7-5 advantage in corner kicks. Passaro finished with seven saves for W&L while Talbott recorded three saves for the Eagles.