UWM women’s soccer advances to Horizon League finals

UWM’s women’s soccer team will play for an NCAA Tournament berth in the Horizon League Championship finals 6 p.m. Saturday at Engelmann Stadium. The top-seeded Panthers face second-seeded Cleveland State, with the winner earning the Horizon League’s automatic NCAA bid.

The UWM women's soccer team.
UWM’s women’s soccer will play in the Horizon League Championship final 6 p.m. Saturday at Engelmann Stadium.

UWM advanced against Oakland University on penalty kicks, 4-2, in Thursday night’s league semifinals. The teams played to a 1-1 draw in regulation and extra time. Then UWM freshman goalkeeper Elaina LaMacchia saved two of Oakland’s four attempts in the shootout, while the Panthers’ shot-takers were perfect on all of theirs.

It’s the third straight season the Panthers have reached the league’s title match. UWM’s was eliminated on penalty kicks in the 2017 league finals.

The Panthers gave up the game’s first goal at the hour mark, but drew level just four minutes later when UWM freshman substitute Rafferty Kugler headed the ball into Oakland’s net from six yards out.

The Panthers won their fourth consecutive Horizon League regular-season title by posting a perfect 9-0 league record. UWM is 15-1-1 overall and seeks its first trip to the NCAA Tournament since 2013.

For more information, visit the UWM Athletics website at mkepanthers.com.

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