Palermo Hat Trick Sends Owls Through to AMC Semifinals
FULTON, MO -- After battling its way back into the game on two different occasions, the William Woods University women's soccer team got a hat trick from Jamie Palermo to earn a 3-2 win over Lyon College on Friday night and advance to the semifinals of the 2012 AMC Postseason Tournament.
In stark contrast to the last time these teams played each other, the first half found neither team able to strike, although the Owls controlled much of the play.
The Scots would again strike first, however, as Maria Monterroso sprang Chandler Rae with a through ball, putting the Lyon forward in alone on goal. She would manage to convert, and Lyon led 1-0 in the 61st minute.
As if replaying the script from the team's previous meeting, the Owls were able to equalize shortly after the opening goal, with Palermo leveling the game in the 66th minute. Ashley Deckard drove a free kick into the penalty box and Palermo leapt to head the ball. Her effort met a pair of Lyon defenders, but the rebound fell to her feet and she left no questions, hammering the ball into the back of the net.
The Owls continued to control the match, pressing for the winner, but the Scots had other plans. Hannah Osman found Monica Ayala at the corner of the box for a 2-1 lead in the the 71st minute.
Palermo was again able to equalize for the Owls, this time combining with Jessica Varner for a nifty give-and-go in the 82nd minute. After dribbling into the center of the park, Palermo tried to play the ball wide to a back-checking Varner, but the ball took a funky bounce. Varner was able to turn and lift the ball over the defense, with Palermo able to elevate and head the ball over Kelly Spiteri's reach and into the net.
The junior completed the hat trick in the 88th minute, with Deckard earning the assist this time. A quick give and go along the left sideline between Deckard and Brittainy German (St. Peters, Mo.) allowed Deckard to get to the endline. A perfectly curled outswinging cross found Palermo at the back post for the easy gamewinner.
Lyon finishes its season 7-11-1. With the win, William Woods moves to 10-7-1 on the year. A semifinal rematch with Park University is next up for the Owls on Monday, November 5. Kickoff for the match is set for 1 p.m. in Parkville, Missouri.