By Andrew Kriz & Rachel Kearney
The Olivet Nazarene University Tigers have won the Chicago Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament Title for the second straight year.
The NAIA No. 9 Lady Tigers won 2-0 against No. 18 Trinity Christian College (Ill.) over Homecoming weekend.
The pair of goals came from senior forward Jessica Jones during her senior night and junior defender Devin Johnston in the first 10 minutes of the match.
The Lady Tigers earned the title after their first postseason game was decided in a shootout.
Both teams braved the 45 mph winds and near-freezing temperatures as the game went into two overtime periods after a 1-1 score in regulation.
Johnston’s final penalty kick in the shootout gave the Lady Tigers a 4-2 advantage to clinch the win.
The conference tournament followed the program’s first-ever regular season CCAC championship as the team went 15-2-1 overall, 9-1 in conference. They shared the title with Judson University (Ill.), who lost to Trinity Christian in the tournament semifinals.
“We’ve really come together this season,” Johnston said. “Our team is just really good all around and everyone contributes equally.”
Several players received recognition from the CCAC for those contributions. Senior midfielder Janel Schmitt, juniors goalkeeper Wendy Espejel and midfielder Meghan Pipal, and sophomore Rachel Kilbry were named to the all-conference first team. Junior defender Katrina Holm and freshman Jessica Higer were named to the second team.
The Lady Tigers now look to host Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.) Saturday, Nov. 19, after earning a fifth seed in the NAIA national tournament. If they win, they will move on to Decatur, Ala. for the final rounds.