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Owens Beats Butler on Penalty Kicks to Stay Alive in National Tournament

Nov. 19, 2013 - Disappointment turned into delight and Owens Community College lives for another night.

The Express rebounded from Monday's penalty kicks loss to Darton College in the opening round of the NJCAA Women's Division I Soccer National Championship Tournament to upset fifth-seeded Butler Community College on penalty kicks on Tuesday.

owens win
Celebration breaks out as Owens Community College wins its match November 19 on penalty kicks to survive in the tournament.

And while ninth-seeded Owens, of Perrysburg, OH has played its two pool games Butler, of El Dorado, KN, plays Darton at 4 p.m. Wednesday in a game that will determine the fate of all three teams, only one of whom can advance to Friday's semifinals.

Tuesday's game was tied 1-1 after 90 minutes of regulation and went directly to penalty kicks under pool play rules. This time Owens was not to be denied.

Monday's shootout went to six shots with Darton prevailing 6-5. This time Owens won 4-3 with sophomore Elizabeth Theaker scoring on the Express' fifth shot for the victory.

Theaker also was successful on Monday and admitted she wasn't feeling any extra pressure on Tuesday.

"Walking up there wasn't like anything was different than it was yesterday," Theaker said in between smiles and giggles.

"I just kind of did the same thing except for the shot. I knew that they watched us take those PKs yesterday. She jumped left, I kicked right, well, my left."

For Owens head coach Mary Whisler the outcome was further validation of her team's character.

"These girls have been the same way all year long," she said. "They never give up. They never have, they never will. I couldn't ask for a better group. It's a great feeling to be here and to show that we belong."

Freshman Kendyl Christian, sophomore Jill Burkholder and classmate Haley Kreger were successful in the shootout for Owens with sophomore Jessica Grindle being denied by Butler goalkeeper Kelsi Langley.

Sophomore Morgan Foster, freshman Madison Decker and sophomore Paige Thompson also were successful for Butler with freshman Brittany Decker being denied by Owens goalkeeper Erika Brinkman and freshman Korrie Raney hitting the crossbar and opening the door for Theaker.

In regulation, Grindle scored her second goal of the tournament, heading in an assist from Burkholder's corner kick to give Owens a 1-0 lead with 3:54 to play in the first half.

Butler evened things with 37:59 to play when Lawrence scored on a deflection on an assist from Thompson.

Butler had come into the game ranked first nationally in goals scored with 130 goals in 23 games.

Butler also brought the nation's top scorer in Foster who accounted for 43 goals in 23 games. She also was first in points with 102, first in shots in 139 and 10th in game-winning goals with six.