The University of Ottawa Gee-Gees women's soccer team won the OUA Championship Sunday afternoon thanks to a 1-0 victory over the Western Mustangs in London, Ont. Katherine Bearne got the pivotal goal for Ottawa.
Bearne, a fourth-year midfielder, got the only goal of the match in the 65th minute. Delaney Rickert-Hall sliced a cross onto the head of Miranda Smith, who directed the ball to Bearne. Western goalkeeper Megan Girardi had been unbeatable to that point, but Bearne poked the ball past her.
The game was a cagey one, with chances few and far between in the first half. The Gee-Gees did see the majority of the ball and were more active offensively.
Goalkeeper Margot Shore made two saves to earn her second clean sheet of the playoffs. The Gee-Gees managed seven shots on target, with Girardi stopped six of them.
The win marks the ninth time the uOttawa program has been crowned OUA Champions, and the first time since 2014.
"It's a special achievement for these players. It's been a fantastic season," said Gee-Gees head coach Steve Johnson.
"The team has played well all year, they played in difficult conditions. To adapt within a different environment and come through so well both days, I think it prepares us for the next step towards a National Championship."
The Gee-Gees will head in to the U SPORTS National Championships at uOttawa as the number one seed out of the OUA thanks to their win. Ottawa had already clinched a spot at the championships due to being the hosts.
The Gee-Gees will enter the tournament as the fourth seed overall, and will start with a tough matchup against the Canada West runner-up Calgary Dinos on Thursday night at Gee-Gees Field.
For success in the tournament, the team will need to play their best soccer of the season, and with an OUA title under their belts, the team has some confidence going into the championship.
The U SPORTS Women's Soccer National Champions run from November 8-11, action against Calgary gets underway at 6 p.m. on Thursday and will be broadcast live on USPORTS.live (subscription required).