From the Tallahassee Democrat
In the first No. 1 vs. No. 2 matchup on the Florida State campus in more than four years, the top-ranked FSU women’s soccer team knocked off Duke 1-0 on Thursday night in front of an overflowing crowd at the Seminole Soccer Complex.
The Seminoles are now 7-0 overall and 1-0 in the ACC. Duke drops to 6-2 and 0-1.
“It was exciting,” said sophomore Jamia Fields, who scored the match’s lone goal. “But every game is big here at Florida State. Every game is big. And that’s why players come here.”
Not many regular-season matches have been quite this big, though. The No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown was the first in any sport for Florida State since April 2008 when the No. 1 Miami baseball team won two out of three against Buster Posey and the second-ranked Seminoles.
This one ended up much better for FSU.
Florida State took the lead in the 24th minute of the match when a Carson Pickett pass deflected off a Duke defender in the box and rolled toward the middle of the field. Fields took advantage, ripping a left-footed rocket past Duke keeper Tara Campbell and into the top, back corner of the net for a 1-0 lead.
It was Fields’ first goal of the season.
“That’s a top-quality goal,” FSU coach Mark Krikorian said. “No goalkeeper probably in this country or in the world saves that.”
Fields was asked if it was one of the best goals of her career. At any level.
“Yeah, because I’m not left-footed,” she said with a laugh. “I mean, I just went for it. ... I saw it bouncing around and I knew if it came out I could just shoot it as hard I can.
“When it came out I just looked for the left corner and got it in.”
Duke had a couple of terrific scoring chances of its own in the first half, but squandered each. One was on an ill-advised chip right to FSU goalkeeper Kelsey Wys in a one-on-one opportunity and another was on a flubbed shot, with a wide-open net, that sailed 20 feet high.
Florida State missed a couple of chances of its own, including a free kick in the second half from Isabella Schmid that bounced off the left post.
“They certainly had a few good chances,” Krikorian said. “We had a few good chances, too. Sometimes that’s soccer. It’s about the composure to finish.
“Boy, Duke is a darn good team. They’re going to win a lot of games in this conference, I hope we are as well.”
It may have been the soccer program’s own version of “The Game of the Century,” but the FSU head coach didn’t put a whole lot of emphasis on beating the No. 2 team in the country.
He was more concerned with knocking off a conference foe.
It’s just another ACC game against a great opponent,” Krikorian said. “At the end of the day it’s just another three points for the win, and now we start our preparation for (No. 14) Wake Forest on Sunday.”