By James Hill
SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- Missouri sophomore forward Alysha Bonnick fired in the final overtime kick Friday as the third-seeded Tigers advanced to Sunday's final of the Big 12 Soccer Championship at Blossom Soccer Stadium.
Missouri (14-5-1) advanced to the championship game after winning 4-3 on penalty kicks over the seventh-seeded Kansas Jayhawks. The Tigers, playing in their fourth championship game, will take on No. 4 Colorado, which also advanced on penalty kicks over top seed Oklahoma State.
Kansas (12-7-2) got on the board early as junior midfielder Monica Dolinsky scored her ninth goal of the season, a solo effort, 6:23 into the game. Missouri's junior midfielder Meghan Pfeiffer scored an unassisted goal in the 71st minute, her third of the campaign, and the score was tied at 1-1.
In the penalty kicks portion, Kansas senior midfielder Missy Geha gave the Jayhawks a 1-0 lead. The lead was maintained as both goalkeepers – Missouri junior Tasha Dittamore and Kansas senior Stephanie Baugh, substituting for junior Julie Hanley – alternated on saves. Tiger senior defender Kat Tar made it 1-1, and Dolinsky gave the Jayhawks a 2-1 edge. Missouri senior goalkeepers Mallory Forst again evened the score at 2-2. Kansas junior forward Shannon McCabe made her shot, as did Missouri junior midfielder Bree Thornton. A turning point came as Hanley's shot was saved by Dittamore. Bonnick then propelled the Tigers into the final.
Missouri lost 4-1 in last year's semifinals to Texas A&M. The Tigers made the 1998, 1999 and 2003 finals, where they fell 3-2 in double-overtime to Oklahoma State.
The Tigers held a huge 25-8 lead in shots, with an 11-4 edge on goal. Dittamore recorded three saves and Hanley had nine.