BLACKSBURG, Va. - After a close first half and a scoreless second, Tech's women's soccer team defeated the Clemson Tigers for the first time in program history, 2-1, as the two teams battled in through overtime for the fourth straight year. The Hokies, who move to 7-2-0 on the season and 1-0 in ACC play, put an end to a four-year tying streak against the Tigers, who fell to 3-6-0 overall and 0-1 in the ACC after the match. Senior Julian Johnson’s last-minute heroics and junior Jennifer Harvey’s regulation score put numbers on the board for the Hokies, while Tara Cort found the net for the Tigers.
Harvey would be the first to strike, in the 11th minute, as she was able to get a foot on a throw-in from Julian Johnson after scrambling in the box. Harvey slipped the ball, on the ground, past the keeper for her fifth score of the season, while Johnson earned her fourth assist of the year on the play.
The two teams battled through the remainder of the first half with the ball reaching as far as either team’s 18 very few times. The Hokie defense, led my Brittany Michels and Kelly Lynch, held their ground in the first half, allowing the Tigers to take just six shots. Clemson only came close to Tech’s keeper once, but the shot resulted in a Tiger goal with 15 seconds remaining in the half. Sophomore Tara Cort scored for Clemson on her only shot of the game, receiving the ball from teammate Ashlynne Bass as she sailed a free kick into the box for her teammates.
The Hokie defense would prevail again in the second half, keeping the ball away from Tech’s keeper Kristin Carden and allowing the Tigers just three shots in the half. Tech’s offense took five shots in the period but neither team could connect by the end of regulation, forcing overtime for the fourth consecutive year.
The Hokies out-shot the Tigers 3-to-0 in extra time, two of those shots coming in the 96th minute of the match. Tech’s Kelsey Billups took a corner kick with 4:02 left the extra period. Billups served the ball in to Emily Jukich who fired at the goal, nailing the crossbar as Clemson’s keeper dove left at the shot. Johnson handled the rebound, three feet away from the goal line to tap the ball into a wide-open net for the Hokie win and her second goal of the season.
Carden moves to 2-0 on the season after making two saves against the Tigers and facing nine shots while Clemson’s keeper Paula Pritzen made five saves on the night after facing 16 shots from the Hokies.
Tech will return to action on Sunday, Sept. 25, as they make the trip to Raleigh, N.C., to take on NC State at 3 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech women's soccer, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_WSoccer).