Catamounts clinch a berth in SoCon Women’s Soccer, beat App State

Fans packed the Catamount Athletic Complex dressed in their best Halloween costumes on Oct. 30 to cheer on the Western Carolina University Catamounts against the Appalachian State Mountaineers in their final home game of the season. 

The fans were passionate the entire game providing a big boost each time the Catamounts were in scoring position.  Fans were rewarded with a costume contest and giveaways.  A group dressed as the “Despicable Me” minions won the prize for best costume.

The costume contest was not the only thing Catamount fans were concerned with as a Catamount win would vault the team into a Southern Conference Tournament berth Also, this was first time the Catamounts reached double digit wins since 2008, which is also the last time the players were Southern Conference Champions. 

Last year Appalachian State ended the Catamounts chance for a berth in the Southern Conference Tournament defeating them with a score of 1-0.

Going into halftime, the game was tied in a defense battle with no goals scored. 

This trend continued until 8:35 was left in regulation when WCU’s Sara Robinson put the ball in the back of the net to put WCU up 1-0.  Kelly Pannell assisted the goal. The crowd erupted.

The Catamounts were able to hold the Mountaineers scoreless and hold onto win their 10th game of the season as well as gain entry into the SoCon tournament with the 1-0 victory.

Once the final whistle was blown, the fans gave a standing ovation to the Catamounts beating their rival as well as extending their season.

The win gives the team a record of 10-8-1 and a record of 4-6-0 in the Southern Conference.  This was also the first home win against a SoCon opponent of the season.  The ladies improved by three wins since last season when they went 7-10.

Appalachian State fell to 8-4-5 and 4-2-4 in the SoCon.

Sophomore forward Pannell led the Catamounts in goals this season with eight.  One goal short of tying fellow sophomore Markie-Lynn Studnicky’s nine goals from 2012, Pannell ended the regular season two goals away from tying for fifth place for goals in a single season in the Catamount record books.  Laura Bramlett, who had 10 goals in the 2001 season, holds fifth place in single season goals.

The Catamounts boast three seniors on the team: Katie Weigel, Kayla Sedgley and Christine Kaznowski.

Keep an eye open for Catamount action in the tournament as they play for a SoCon championship.  The Southern Conference Tournament begins on Nov. 3 and the SoCon championship is played on Nov. 10 at Davidson College. Eight SoCon teams receive berths into the tournament each year.