BROOKINGS, S.D. – South Dakota State sophomore Cece Limongi registered her first-career goal in the second semifinal of the #SummitWSOC Championships, presented by U.S. Air Force Special Warfare to top third-seeded Oral Roberts, 1-0, the Fishback Soccer Park.
"I thought our team showed a lot of composure," South Dakota State head coach Brock Thompson said. "Oral Roberts had a great plan and they're a great team. Our team didn't panic, though, and especially in the second half our team created a lot of great chances. I'm proud of our team and excited for the opportunity to play in Saturday's final."
The Jacks applied consistent pressure early on, notching four shots on goal in the opening 45 minutes. The tournament hosts finally broke through 25 minutes into the second half when Limongi scored in the 70th-minute after receiving a low cross into the box from the 2019 Freshman of the Year Maya Hansen.
ORU kept on the attack late in the contest, looking for the equalizer and the Golden Eagles' best chance came the 87th-minute when Gabrielle Abbey appeared to have a clean look with SDSU goalkeeper Maggie Smither out of the goal box, but the Jacks' back line came through with a team save to preserve the victory.
Oral Roberts goalkeeper Allison Austin came up with key saves when needed, collecting two in the first half and finishing with nine for the contest. Smither, the league's reigning three-time Goalkeeper of the Year, recorded two saves in the match, as the Jackrabbits defense limited the Golden Eagles to four total shots.
The Jackrabbits will play No. 1 seed Denver on Saturday at Noon CT. This will be the first meeting between the Pioneers and the Jackrabbits in the title game since 2014, where No. 1 South Dakota State beat No. 3 Denver by a 5-4 margin in penalty kicks.
- South Dakota State had 10 shots on goal compared to ORU's three overall, while the Jacks recorded 15 shots compared to the Golden Eagles' four.
Inside the box score
- Limongi's game-winning goal was her first goal of the season and first of her career.
- Freshman of the Year Maya Hansen recorded her third assist of the season and 17th point overall, which is second-best on the team.
News & Notes
- This is the first time the top two seeds will face each other in the championship game since 2012 when No. 1 Oakland defeated No. 2 Purdue Fort Wayne 2-0.
- This is South Dakota State's first trip to the championship game since 2016 when the Jackrabbits beat Oral Roberts 3-2 in penalty kicks.
- In the first meeting of the season between Denver and South Dakota State, the Pioneers beat the Jackrabbits, 2-1, in the regular-season finale in Denver.