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CIS QF: Hawks late rally falls short
Laurier: 1 Trinity Western - CIS Quarter-final: 2

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VICTORIA (November 8, 2012) - The Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks women's soccer team had their hopes of a CIS Championship dashed on Thursday night as they lost 2-1 to the Trinity Western Spartans at Centennial Stadium.

After spotting the Spartans a 2-0 lead, the Hawks rallied with a goal in the 78th minute from Amanda Mithrush of Thunder Bay, Ont. However, they could not pull even in the final minutes and will play in the consolation bracket for the second straight season.

"I'm so proud of everybody on the field," said co-captain Kelsey Tikka of Thunder Bay, Ont., after the game. "We gave it all we've got. We have nothing to be upset about. We put our 110 per cent effort in and we're going to rebuild, come back tomorrow and come out tomorrow fighting again." 

"I thought we played fantastic," added Head Coach BARRY MACLEAN. "For me, Trinity Western was by far the best team we've played all season. They can hurt you from every position on the field, they're very athletic and every player that came off the bench was as good as the ones that started. So I thought we gave them a little bit too much credit in the first half but the second half I thought we played the game very even and the fact we went down 2-0 and kept fighting shows a lot of character."

Facing the second-ranked team in the nation, the No. 6 Hawks, featuring a lineup with three rookies in the starting 11, showed some nerves in the opening minutes of the game. Both Krista Gommeringer of Calgary, and Vanessa Kovacs of North Delta, B.C., had great chances in the opening 15 minutes but failed to find the target on either chance.

Just five minutes later though, the Spartans would break through when Jessica King of Liverpool, England, corralled a loose ball at the top of the box before firing a bullet shot past Laurier keeper Katrina Ward of Surrey, B.C., to make it 1-0.

That scoreline would hold into the second half where the Hawks found their legs and played an even game with the Spartans. Forward Julie Maheu of Oakville, Ont., created a chance for the Hawks in the 51st minute as she fired a dangerous cross into the box but Trinity Western keeper Kristen Funk of Calgary, snagged it before it found Emily Brown of Waterloo, Ont.

The Spartans would extend their lead just 15 minutes later as Jennifer Castillo of Surrey, B.C., scored off a corner kick to give Trinity Western a two-goal edge.

Despite the deficit, the Hawks refused to quit and got a goal back in the 78th minute.  A cross into the box by Krista Cellucci of Mississauga, Ont., was cleared to the top of the box where Mithrush gathered it in before firing over Funk, off the cross bar and into the net.

However, the Spartans didn't give the Hawks any quality chances over the final 12 minutes, killing the clock effectively in Laurier's half to earn the win.

Laurier will now face the RSEQ Champions, the Sherbrooke Vert et Or, in the Consolation Semifinal. Head Coach BARRY MACLEAN knows it will be important for the team to finish the season strong.

"We want to win tomorrow and we want to get ourselves regrouped and reorganized and lick their wounds for a couple of hours now and focus on trying to get a result tomorrow," said MacLean.

Game time on Friday is set for 1:30 p.m. PST and the game can be seen live on www.cis-sic.tv.

NOTES: Mithrush's goal was her first since she scored four goals in her rookie season in 2010...the Hawks saw their all-time record against Trinity Western fall to 0-3...Friday's game will be the first time that the Hawks have faced Sherbrooke at the CIS Championship
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