The first half was even, with Princeton holding an early advantage with early opportunities. Princeton's Lisa Campbell also had a scoring opportunity in the Eagles' penalty area in the thirteenth minute, but her shot went over the crossbar. These missed chances would come back to haunt Princeton.
The Eagles flew into the second half and immediately took control of the game, playing the first thirteen minutes of the second half in the Princeton end. But it wouldn't be until the 57:00 mark until Woodrow Wilson's Tracy Spielman broke the deadlock from a pass by Alex Mahaffey.
“I always look for Tracy, she's a good ball handler,” Mahaffey said. “I sent the ball through, looked for her and she finished.”
“(Tabor) has never played soccer before in her life. This is her first year, so I give her full credit for that goal,” Mahaffey added. “It really gave us that extra umph to get through.”
Princeton, a team that has thrived on coming from behind, was all but finished, and any remote hope of winning vanished when Spielman headed in a corner kick from Mahaffey.
“Alex had an awesome corner kick and I was just running after it and headed it in,” Spielman said. “We practice headers a lot in practice. I was waiting for it.”
“We have been a very, very good team about coming back when we get behind a goal,” said Princeton head coach Rick Ball. “Tonight, we were just not able to figure it out. It was as though one goal turned into two and two turned into three.”
Princeton ends the season 9-11-3, but also with hope for the future as all of their starters return for next season.
Meanwhile, the Flying Eagles will face George Washington in the Region 3 final Thursday night in Beckley. GW overcame an eleventh minute Midland Trail goal by Sarah Legg with goals by Kathleen Barber, Sarah Robbins, Sharon Briggs, and Caroline Copenhaver.
Thursday's match not only represents a home tilt in the playoffs, but unfinished business as well.
“It's always good to play at home because you don't have to travel,” Eagles' head coach Paulette Umberger said. “We look forward to playing. We played GW earlier in the season to a 0-0 tie.”