DAYTON, Ohio - Third-seeded Dayton Flyers (12-8-2) won its ninth A-10 Championship crown Sunday at Baujan Field, defeating top-seed La Salle Explorers, 2-1. With the win, Dayton earns the Atlantic 10's automatic bid to the NCAA Women's Soccer Championship.
La Salle (14-5-2) scored early in the contest, when Paige McDowell sent a free kick into the box. A-10 Offensive Player of the Year, Kelsey Haycook played the bounce perfectly and headed the ball past UD goalie Heather Betancourt in the third minute of play. The goal was Haycook's 20th of the season, who entered the Championship ranked second nationally in season goals.
The Explorers led 1-0 until the 69th minute when Alexis Kiehl and Nicole Waters set up a pass from the 14 towards a waiting Erin O'Malley who headed it in against Jessica Wiggins for the equalizer.
Less than three minutes later, the Flyers netted the eventual game-winner as O'Malley crossed a ball into Megan Herr, the junior's first goal on the season.
O'Malley, who recorded two goals and an assist in the Championship, was named Most Outstanding Player. Against Saint Joseph's in the first round, O'Malley netted the game-winning goal to advance to the semifinals. She also assisted on Megan Herr's game-winner in the Championship.
Joining O'Malley on the All-Championship team are teammates Alexis Kiehl, Nicole Waters, Heather Betancourt and Ashley Campbell. Making the team for La Salle were Jessika Kagan, Kerri Aiken, Maryam Huseini and Kelsey Haycook. Saint Joseph's Emily Gingrich, George Washington's Kate Elson, and VCU's Jackie Ernest also earned All-Championship honors.
The NCAA Selection show will be held Monday, Nov. 10 at 4:30 p.m. on NCAA.com.