CWRU Women’s Soccer Upends #8 Denison behind Best’s Double-OT Goal

CWRU Women’s Soccer Upends #8 Denison behind Best’s Double-OT Goal

Case Western Reserve University senior Makenzie Best scored a 'golden goal' in the 107th minute of play to give the Spartans a 1-0 double-overtime win over eighth-ranked Denison University at DiSanto Field on Tuesday night, handing the previously undefeated Big Red their first loss of the season.

Best's game winner, her second of the year, came at the 106:20 mark of play.  The senior forward took possession from a Big Red defender at midfield, and went on a breakaway towards the goal.  One-on-one with the keeper, Best was able to finish for the 'golden goal,' her team-leading fifth score of the year.

The 'golden goal' was the first by a Spartan since the team's 2-1 win over Washington University (Mo.) on October 17, 2014.  CWRU improved to 1-0-1 in overtime games this season, including a scoreless tie against then eighth-ranked Thomas More College on September 6th.

Best's game winner would have not been possible, if not for a game-saving stop minutes early by keeper Megan Romelfanger.  Ninety seconds into the second overtime period, Denison's Anne Denz took a point-blank shot on goal that Romelfanger dove at to deflect clear of the net.  A second chance opportunity for Naomi Barker sailed wide of frame to keep the contest scoreless.

The save was one of five on the day for Romelfanger, who played the entirety of the contest to earn her fourth individual shutout of the season.  It was the eighth team shutout of the season for the Spartans' defense through 11 games, as the team held Denison, ranked 20th in Division III in goals scored to begin the week, to just six shots on frame.

Senior captain Lauren Wichman, juniors Madeline Pollifrone and Christine Breindel, and sophomores Neha Cheemalavagu and Elle Zadina played all 106 minutes in the win to key the strong defensive effort.

The Spartans improved to 7-2-2 with the win, the team's third in its last four games.  Denison dropped to 10-1-0 with the loss.

Wednesday's win also gave Tiffany Crooks the 77th victory of her career, tying her with Kim Shaw (1990-99) for the most by a head coach in the program's history.

The Spartans will return to University Athletic Association play, and continue its stretch of three-straight games against nationally-ranked teams, when CWRU plays host to Brandeis University on Sunday, October 11th at 11:00 a.m., as a part of the University's Homecoming Weekend.