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Mark DeCotis, Athletic Communications

Office:  321-433-5700, 321-759-4540 (C)

BCC Wins 5-1 to Advance to Friday's National Championship Semifinals

November 14, 2012 - Brevard Community College's women's soccer team got first-time goals from three players and two more from trusted scorers to defeat rival Darton State College 5-1 on Wednesday. The victory advanced BCC to Friday's semifinal round of the NJCAA Division I National Championship Tournament at Melbourne Central Catholic.

BCC plays at 10 a.m. Friday against the lowest remaining seed which will be determined over the remainder of today's games.

BCC seeded first in the tournament and ranked No. 1 in the nation improved to 15-1 with its 13th straight victory including a forfeit. Darton dropped to 13-6 and was eliminated.

Freshman Jess Fassnidge headed in a free kick from fellow freshman Sue Kumaning for her first goal of the season with 23 minutes and 33 seconds to play in the first half for a 1-0 BCC lead.

Twenty minutes later with 2:13 to play in the first half Darton sophomore Savannah Cantrell netted an assist from classmate Chihiro Hikita to tie the game at 1-1. In the was the first goal BCC has allowed since a 2-1 victory over Central Illinois on Oct. 11.

The game remained tight – and contentious with four yellow cards issued – until BCC sophomore and co-captain Lois Edvardsson netted her 13th goal of the season at the 33:05 mark of the second half for a 2-1 lead.

Less than 12 minutes later sophomore and Merritt Island resident Chelsea Seng netted her first of the season with an assist from freshman Jade Rhodes for a 3-1 lead. Sophomore and leading scorer Courtney Hueston scored her 14th goal of the season on a breakaway at the 2:54 mark and freshman Heather Williams her first on another breakaway with 1:11 to go for the final margin.

The victory was BCC's second of the season against Darton, the Titans winning 2-0 in Georgia on Sept. 15 and avenged Darton eliminating BCC from contention for the 2011 national tournament.

"We elevated our game the second half, we played more possession, we were more relaxed and we were very focused," BCC head coach Jeff Carr said of Wednesday's victory for the program that is in its third season of existence.

"It was very exciting," Carr added about Seng's goal. "She plays so hard. We call her the gnat. She's so persistent. She worked so hard and was a major factor in the game, a huge factor."

Seng credited an offseason – and in-season – workout and training regimen with elevating her to the level where she is a major factor off the bench.

"Since the ending of last season when we lost to Darton, I told myself it was my goal to play . . . that's what I want to do," Seng said.

"That's what I wanted to do. I wanted to be part of this team and contribute something. I've practiced with boys teams. I am out on soccer field every night to get a better touch, a better shot, everything."

And now she finds herself along with her fellow sophomores who experienced the disappointment of 2011 being a beacon for a talented group of freshmen.

"The freshmen are not only just looking up to us, they're expecting stuff from us. They're looking to us to lead them, to guide them, to help them along."

As for her nickname: "I just run around the field sometimes," she said "Being a pest."

For Darton head coach Ken Veilands, he said his team had a hard time coming off a game on Tuesday and then falling behind.

"When it's do or die, you may not play a game that way," Veilands said. "You've just got to throw things at them. I told the kids when we got behind 'lose 2-1, we lose 5-1, 6-1, it doesn't matter. We've got to take chances.'

"It's hard to come back day two . . . without a day off and get behind and dig yourself out of it. Credit to them they're a very good team and they had a good game plan."

BCC sophomore goalkeeper Julia Kantor had six saves while Darton freshman keeper Tori Danchak saved five.

Among the shots she didn't save were those of Fassnidge and Williams.

"Jess, fantastic, she was in the right place at the right time, headed it into the back of the net," Carr said. "It's nice that she's back (from concussions). Then Heather, she went coast to coast. She's a special player. She's fantastic."