VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Bridgewater's quest for the program's first ODAC championship came up just short Sunday afternoon as Lynchburg scored in the final minute of overtime to defeat the Eagles 1-0 in the title game at Virginia Wesleyan University.
The championship game Sunday was the Eagles' second appearance in the title game in program history with both coming against Lynchburg.
Bridgewater's defense put forth another strong effort Sunday, holding the Hornets scoreless for 99 minutes.
Both teams had five shots in the first half, but in the second half the Hornets possessed the ball and outshot the Eagles 9-0. Bridgewater's defense held strong and allowed just three shots on goal in the second half and keeper Hayley Talbott continued her solid play as she turned away each of the Hornets' shots on goal in the second half.
Bridgewater had its best chance midway in the overtime period. Keri Rager took the ball down the left side and crossed a pass across the top of the box to Isabella Krider who was making a run down the right side. Krider got her shot past the keeper toward the far post, but the ball rolled just wide of the post.
The game appeared to be headed to the second overtime, but the Hornets tallied with less than a minute left when Caitlin Mertens turned on her defender and put her shot just inside the near post from 20 yards out for the game-winner.
Lynchburg held a 17-6 edge in shots and a 7-1 edge in corner kicks.
Talbott turned in another stellar performance in goal for the Eagles with 10 saves.
The Eagles, 16-5-1 on the season, now hope receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III National Tournament. The tournament field will be announced Monday afternoon at 1:00 p.m.