Winston Salem, N.C. -Jessica Jue's second goal of the game was the difference today as Ohio topped No. 15 Wake Forest in double overtime, 3-2. The junior took Ohio's only penalty corner of the game and scored off a return pass from Taylor Brown in the 88th minute of play.
"For Jess to get two goals and be in the right place at the right time, I think it takes a bit of pressure off her," Head Coach Neil Macmillan said. "She was opportunistic, pouncing on a loose ball and getting it on target with the first goal. Then on the second, it came off a short corner, and she had some space but its something she works on, reacting off the initial entry."
For Jue, it was her first multi-goal game since last season against Missouri State. She now has three multi-goal games in her career and has scored the winner every time. For Brown, it was her second multi-assist game of the season and marked the sixth time in 11 games that she has earned multiple points this season.
This was Ohio's first win over a ranked opponent this season in three tries. Last year, the Bobcats defeated No. 6 Ohio State and No. 8 American en route to a MAC title and NCAA berth.
Ohio improved to 2-4-1 all-time against the Demon Deacons and earned its first win against an ACC team since 2007, when it topped No. 4 Duke. Macmillan also moved to within one win of 100 for his career against his former employer.
"I hope this win today takes a little weight off our players' shoulders," Macmillan said. "We have been unlucky at times this season and to capitalize on our one corner today, maybe we're in for a string of good fortune coming up."
Ohio goalkeeper Brittany Walker, a two-time Mid-American Conference Defensive Player of the Week, made six saves as Wake Forest notched 26 shots to Ohio's 12. WF also accumulated 15 penalty corner attempts to the Green and White's one. However, the Bobcats made their try count.
"Our defense was pretty resolute today," Macmillan added. "We gave up a lot of shots but they only had eight or nine on target. Brittney was fantastic, both athletic and dynamic with her saves. Our defenders really helped her out also making plays higher up in the "D" and blocking a lot of shots."
Wake Forest had the first three shots of the game with Walker stopping Rhea Taylor in the fourth minute. Brown had Ohio's first shot in the 7th minute with an attempt that traveled wide.
Ashley Cureton got the Bobcats on the board when she scored her second goal of the season on a deflection in the 13th minute. The sophomore got her stick on a try by Brown to give Ohio the initial lead. Less than a minute later, Jue scooped up a loose ball inside the "D" and fired home her second goal of the season, doubling the Ohio advantage.
The first penalty corner did not occur until the 20th minute but Ohio fended off consecutive chances by the home side, blocking a try and having Walker deny the other. However, WF earned three corners in little over a minute and found its breakthrough. Jess McFadyen scored her sixth goal of the season at 21:31 to cut the Bobcat lead in half.
Sensing they had an edge, WF pressed and got two more shots and another penalty corner but could not even the score. Ohio closed the half with three shots of its own as Brown was denied twice by the Demon Deacon goalkeeper.
After Wake Forest started the second half with a scoring chance, Ohio answered with a Laura Mastro try that was saved and another from Jue that dribbled wide. Sensing they were in a fight, the Demon Deacons had six shots and three penalty corners over a 10-minute span. However, Walker denied Krysta Wangerin three times and Ohio defenders block two additional attempts.
Out of a timeout, WF earned a penalty corner and capitalized as McFadyen scored her second goal of the game with five minutes to play. Both teams had one more try in regulation with Wake Forest shooting wide off a penalty corner and Brown missing wide with two minutes left.
In overtime, WF earned two penalty corners and had the first shot attempt before Mastro missed wide left. Four minutes later, Marissa Higgins had a try narrowly go awry. Over the next 10 minutes and into the second overtime, Wake Forest earned four penalty corners and had six shots, five of which were blocked by Bobcat defenders.
This was the fourth overtime contest of the season for Ohio as it evened its record at 2-2. The `Cats were 4-2 in overtime contests last season.
The Bobcats come home this weekend for games on Saturday and Sunday at Pruitt Field. First, Ohio hosts MAC foe Ball State on Saturday at 1 p.m. and then closes the weekend with its final non-conference game against No. 20 Michigan State at 1 p.m.