LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. — Nikki Neal scored two second-half goals within a 10-minute span on Wednesday to key a 3-1 Central Christian College women’s soccer victory over Mount Mercy in the opening round of the AII Championships.
Central, now 16-3, is back in action today taking on No. 2-seed Georgia Gwinnett at 6 p.m. Central Standard Time.
CCC led 1-0 early on a goal by Haley McMath, with an assist to Neal.
The game stayed that way until the blitz by the Lady Tigers, with Neal scoring both goals. McMath assisted on one of the goals.
Mount Mercy’s only goal was scored by Megan Atkin. Shayna Watkins picked up the win in goal for the Lady Tigers.
“I am very proud of this team,” CCC coach Scott Fogarty said. “We faced a Mount Mercy team that was better than their record shows. Both teams had moments where they controlled the game for a time, but we were able to make the most of our chances. We certainly had to work for everything we got tonight though."
Neal and McMath, who played together in high school, worked their magic to propel Central into the semifinals.
“Haley McMath had a great game and continually showed up in the right place at the right time,” Fogarty said. “Probably her best game of the season. Nikki Neal also left her mark, with two goals and an assist tonight. Big-time players show up in big moments and she definitely stepped it up tonight."