Bobcat Soccer Edged in PBC Title Match by #3 Columbus State in Penalty Kicks

Bobcat Seniors with PBC Runner-Up trophy
Bobcat Seniors with PBC Runner-Up trophy

EVANS, Ga. – In an absolute thriller from start to finish, the Cinderella run for No. 7-seed Georgia College Soccer (11-5-5) came to a close in the Peach Belt Conference (PBC) title match, as the Bobcats were edged by PBC Regular-Season Champion and National No. 3 Columbus State University (16-0-2) Sunday.

The Cougars took the penalty kicks by a 4-2 score, with the deciding strike coming from Riley Clark. The Bobcats shot first and Bria Riancho made the stop. Amanda Murphy put CSU up 1-0 with the following attempt. In the next group, the Bobcats finished down 2-0 after another miss and a make from CSU's Olivia Jarrell.

Senior Sofia Lekas (Lizella) got the Bobcats back in it 2-1, but the Cougars responded with another make from Flo Spano. After a make from freshman Brooke Adams (Kennesaw), Clark closed it out.

The Bobcats put up a brick wall in the match, led by another amazing performance from goalkeeper Ashlee Graham (Decatur). The PBC All-Tournament Team selection made four big saves in the first half, four more in the second, then three in the two overtime periods for 11 total. After two regulation halves, the Cougars had controlled the majority of play, with spurts of attacking from Georgia College.

The tide changed considerably in the overtime periods, as the Bobcats were in control, especially in the first overtime. GC Soccer tallied four of their five corners for the match in that frame, out-shooting CSU 3-1.

Joining Graham on the PBC All-Tournament Team was senior Savanna DeValle (Cairo) and sophomore Kai Jeffries (Lawrenceville).

The loss gives the Bobcats their second PBC Runner-Up trophy in program history, the last coming in 2013 where GC Soccer fell to Clayton State University, also in penalty kicks.

The Bobcats now await at-large selections to the NCAA Southeast Regional, a tall order as the Bobcats were not in the most recent top-10 posted by the NCAA.

The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup and the 2017 PBC Sportsmanship Institution of the Year, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.