South Carolina’s first time in the NCAA Women’s College Cup came to an early end.
A two-goal performance from Jordan DiBiasi lifted the Stanford women’s soccer team to a 2-0 victory against the South Carolina women’s soccer team Friday night at Orlando City Stadium.
DiBiasi opened the scoring for the Cardinal (23-1) in the 10th minute, heading in a free kick from Tegan McGrady. DiBiasi doubled the lead and notched her second goal of the night in the 26th minute after Catarina Macario’s cross found the attacker to slot it past the goalkeeper.
Stanford will play in the College Cup final on Sunday against the winner between Duke and UCLA.
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“It’s the first time for this program. We’re honored to be here, honored to represent the SEC,” South Carolina coach Shelley Smith said after the game. “We told these players to not hang their head, they’ve done amazing things for our program. They’ve accomplished great things. We just ran up against a better team tonight.”
Stanford dominated possession for most of the match, outshooting the Gamecocks 17-5.
According to Smith, Stanford played with immediate urgency, which was key for the Cardinal.
“They won everything,” Smith said. “They beat us to the balls, they won their tackles. They came in with some urgency, and we looked a little flat.”
Entering Friday’s game, the Gamecocks did not concede any goals during its run in the NCAA tournament, and it was the second time this season South Carolina was shut out.
After allowing two early first-half goals, South Carolina stabilized Stanford in the second half, courtesy of sophomore defender Grace Fisk, who recorded several key blocks.
“I say without a doubt, they were the best team we faced all season,” Fisk said. “Their offense was smooth, was fluid. They knew positions, where they should be … they had numerous options in the box. They caused us problems. They knew how to pull us apart.”
“We spoke about it at halftime, these (next) 45 minutes, it’s make or break,” added Fisk. “We knew, as a backline, we had to hold our own if we had any chance of scoring a goal. We did ourselves proud for holding on. We could have crumbled, but we stayed strong, and that gave us a chance.”
USC (19-3- 1) clinched its spot in the College Cup after beating Florida, 2-0, last week at Stone Stadium.