Backs against the wall figuratively, needing a win to clinch one of the top two seeds in next week’s Colonial Athletic Association Championships and a bye past Tuesday’s quarterfinal round; and literally, twice facing one goal deficits, the William and Mary Tribe took its lead from the veterans on Senior Night to defeat Old Dominion 3-2 in front of 401 hardy fans at Albert-Daly Field. With the win, W&M improved to 14-5-1, 9-2-0 in the CAA, while Old Dominion fell to 14-4-1, 7-3-1 in-conference.
The win was also historic for another reason – with James Madison’s double-overtime loss to Virginia Commonwealth on Thursday, W&M won the CAA regular-season title for the third year in a row, and will host the conference championships for the first time ever next Friday and Sunday, November 7-9. As the top seed, W&M will face the winner of a quarterfinal between third-seeded UNC Wilmington and Northeastern at 7 p.m. on Friday, while James Madison as the second-seed awaits the winner of ODU and Hofstra at 4:30 p.m. The two semifinal winners will meet at Albert-Daly Field Sunday at 1 p.m.
Senior All-American Claire Zimmeck (Fairfax, Va.) put the team on her back in the second half, scoring two of the Tribe’s three goals and providing the assist on the other for her second multi-goal match of the year. Down 1-0 coming out of the break, W&M was immediately on the attack. Sophomore Brittany Lane (Houston, Texas) gained possession near midfield on the right side, and lofted a pass to freshman Stephanie Gerow (Alexandria, Va.) on the right side, who one-touched the ball forward to Zimmeck on her way through the defense. With defenders close behind and the goalkeeper on-coming, Zimmeck buried her 11th goal of the year into the lower right corner, only 1:30 into the period.