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NEW YORK, NY (SMI-GLOBAL-WOMEN- UNIVERSITY-SPORTS NOV. 12-14, 2023)-The Columbia women's soccer team from the Ivy league conference scored 2-goals in the last 10-minute of the game to defeat Rutgers University 2-1, recording its first ever victory in a NCAA championship tournament, advances to the 2nd round for the first time in a school program history at Rocco B. Commisso Soccer Stadium in New York City.

The Lions hosted the 2023 NCAA women's soccer Div I championship tournament first round for the first time in school athletic program history and received a-large-berth since 2006, alongside 3-other members of the Ivy League conference Harvard for being the 2023 Ivy League champion, Brown and Princeton received the other two Bids.

Columbia who with its berth to the NCAA tournament ended a 17-year drought participating in the tournament faced-off a top-ranked contender Rutgers University who has competed in the NCAA Div I women's tournament for the past 12- consecutive year, 14-out 16 and 18 overall in school athletic program history.

The game began with the Scarlet Knights controlling the midfield and went to the offensive from the start with counter-attack through the left and right side field corners.

The Lions kept its composure and the defensive line maneuvered to neutralized the attacks with a man-man individual coverage ending the half scoreless.

In the second half, Rutgers picked-up whey they left off and kept the pressure with consecutive counter-attacks and opened the game-score at 65:02' mark.During an offensive attack through the right-side field, defender Allison Lynch centered the ball inside the 18' finding forward Ashley Baran who scored with a semi-circle hard-shot to the left-upper goalpost corner to put The Scarlet Knights in front 1-0, over Columbia.

The Lions answered back with numerous offensive counter-attacks and found the equalizer 13' minute later through Kat Jordan. The goal was originated due to a foul during a free kick defender Ania Prussak centered the ball inside the penalty box finding forward K. Jordan who scored with a header to the upper right-side corner goalpost to tie the game 1-1, with 11' minute remaining in the game.

What it appear that the game was heading to Overtime, Columbia through another counter-attack through the right-side field corner, forward Nata Ramirez centered the ball inside the 18' to Kat Jordan who maneuvered and shot a left-footed that deflected-off Rutgers goalkeeper Olivia Bodmer's hands to Shira Cohen who shot a right footed to put the Lion in front 2-1, and sealed the victory for Columbia with the clock winding down at 88' minute. 

With the win, The Lions advances to the 2nd round to face #1-Seed & nationally ranked#7 Clemson University next Friday Nov. 17, at the Historic Riggs Field, Clemson University in South-Carolina.

Women Starlight Illustrated attended the post-game press conference for couple questions with players Kat Jordan, Shira Cohen and Columbia's head coach Tracey Bartholomew and these are their comments: 

Women Starlight: Congratulations for the historic win today and advancing to the NCAA Div I, Women' soccer second round for the first time in school athletic program history. You were down 1-0, with 15' minute left in the game, everybody seem to be getting nervous and the whole team moved up to frontlines. What were the state of mind of you and the team with the clock winding down ?

Kat Jordan (Columbia player who scored the tying goal):Every single person (players) on the field and on the sidelines we bring good energy, and when Ania Prussack had the free-kick we had a good faith that she will put a good ball and honestly she did all the work and I just tapped it in. It was really exciting and after that it was just keeping the energy and praying for Shira but so happy for every single girls that worked so hard for everything and the coaches and staff that support us it was just bringing the energy and being confident in who we really are which we are now.

Shira Cohen (Columbia player who scored the winning goal):  I think all season we told to ourselves no matter what part of the game we are in, there is always hope and chance. We did it against Brown we were down 1-0, we knew it doesn't matter if its 12' or 2' minute left  we can still win this game having that mentality and knowing no matter what time is and what the score is we can still win the game but there were some moments where we got a little emotional but we had full faith in our team because we've done it time and time again.

Women Starlight: You ( Kat Jordan & Shira Cohen) made history for Columbia women's soccer program, and both became the trendsetters for future generations of the program by scoring the first and 2nd goal that gave the school its first NCAA win in program history.How do you feel about this accomplishment ?

Kat Jordan: Like Shira said it, all started with players before Us making this historic run in the NCAA, it's a great feeling for me and I know it's a great feeling for everyone. I think that when everyone hard work and honest the dedication to this program we honestly we have so much fun when we are playing and I think thats a huge part of it and It feels great to be able to go this far and keep going and hopefully that younger girls that come after us will be just as excited and know they can make great contributions to the program and go even further next year.

Shira Cohen: We are not done yet..!

Photo: Kat Jordan & Shira Cohen(Columbia players)

Women Starlight:With 12-15' minutes left in the game and down 1-0, we notice that you sent everybody upfront to the attack. Were you concern at the point and Did you make any last minute instructions or adjustments in the attack ?
Tracey Bartholomew(Columbia's Head Coach):  We were in the sidelines going Oh Boy.! at the moment you are trying to figure out and try to navigate how to get more numbers forward and Grace went down, and at the moment they could not get the ball out and we were able to win balls in those places and then the energy from where we scored that was just freed everyone.Everyone that was tired then had the extra step and so you can see it.As we are tied, we did not want to abandoned ship and we wanted to win in regulation but if you have more time and if you don't we kind of find those moments and there some great plays that we were able to get in front and you see a senior that doesn't want to see a career to end find the way in a rebound hunting the ball and that was really special to see that moment . We knew we needed to make some adjustments and we did.

Women Starlight:Rutgers came to this game making the NCAA postseason championship tournament for the past 12th consecutive years.Beside being a historic achievement for the Columbia Women's soccer program, How do you feel, and how big or significant is this victory over Rutgers for you?.

Tracey Bartholomew(Columbia's Head Coach):It's massive..!. I've seen Rutgers played. I saw them in the final-four and saw them when they made that trip, knowing the players and the talents. I felt if we can just get through some of our nervous energy in the beginning and just start get comfortable and play with them. Even a halftime we've had our rhythm so I said guys we can play at this level let's just continue what we are trying to do.A really remarkable a team effort for all the way around. Rutgers is a class in the top. The've been in the top regional in our area and if you want to be special you have to beat the best. For me how I've seen step-up to the occasion and find the way to win it's truly remarkable its' such special feeling to have right with that group.
Women Starlight: Thank You so much and Good Luck in the second round of the NCAA championship tournament. 

Photo:Tracey Bartholomew(Columbia's Head Coach)
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