Lynchburg, Va. -- Senior forward Caitlin Mertens (Succasunna, N.J.) took the through-ball and streaked toward the goal, and as the Washington and Lee defense caught up to the University of Lynchburg women's soccer team's leading scorer, the opponent tripped Mertens up in the box.
A penalty kick in overtime with the season on the line.
Mertens calmly finished the PK, sending the third-seeded Hornets past No. 6 seed W&L, 2-1 in the 107th minute of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference quarterfinals, and setting up a date with No. 2-seeded Randolph-Macon Saturday afternoon in Bridgewater.
Senior midfielder Kennedy Jakubek (Leesburg, Va.) scored the Hornets' first goal, but a late strike from the Generals sent the game into extra time until Mertens' penalty kick ended it.
Final: Lynchburg 2, Washington and Lee 1 (OT)
Records: Lynchburg 16-2-2, Washington and Lee 9-5-2
Venue: Shellenberger Field, University of Lynchburg, Lynchburg, Va.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After a scoreless first half controlled mostly by Lynchburg (six shots to W&L's two), Jakubek beat a defender on the right wing in the 58th minute and delivered a strike into the far corner of the goal for a 1-0 Lynchburg lead.
Washington and Lee took the momentum after the goal, culminating in Megan Engeland's 78th minute goal that knotted the score. W&L out-shot the Hornets, 8-5, in the second half.
Lynchburg procured a pair of corner kicks in the first 10 minutes of overtime, but the Hornets got nothing to show for it.
In the second overtime period, following a Generals threat, Lynchburg's counter-attack gained steam at midfield when the ball found its way to Mertens. The senior controlled the ball and beat her defender upfield, forcing the foul in the box and the deciding PK.
Lynchburg will look to repeat as ODAC champions this weekend at Bridgewater College. The Hornets will meet Randolph-Macon at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3, and that match's victor will face the winner of fourth-seeded Virginia Wesleyan and top-seeded Bridgewater in Sunday's championship. The Marlins and Eagles play in the first semifinal Saturday, at 11 a.m.