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Jeff Nations

Tournament bound


Betsy Kwiatkowski isn't ready to wrap up her collegiate soccer career just yet.

The former Stonewall Jackson High School standout, who leads Lynchburg College in scoring this season, has helped the Hornets earn their fourth consecutive NCAA Division III women's soccer tournament appearance.

Lynchburg (17-2-2) earned an automatic bid on Saturday by beating Virginia Wesleyan 3-2 in a penalty kick shootout after battling the Marlins to a 2-2 tie that went to double overtime.

Kwiatkowski earned all-tournament honors for Lynchburg, which will face Transylvania University (Ky.) this weekend at Emory University. Game date and time have yet to be announced. The winner of the Lynchburg/Transylvania game will face the Emory/Maryville winner in the second round.

This season, Kwiatkowski has scored 15 goals and tallied a team-high 16 assists in 21 games for No. 20 Lynchburg. The senior forward has a team-best 46 points.

Another former area star, Sherando graduate Nikki Rhodes, will be making her second straight trip to the NCAA tournament as well. Rhodes is a sophomore defender, and played in 12 games (three starts) for the Hornets this season.

Lynchburg reached the NCAA Final Four last year, falling to Washington University (Mo.) in a penalty-kick shootout.

Virginia Wesleyan also earned an NCAA invitation as an at-large team, meaning another former Sherando standout will play for a national championship. Brittini Dennis, a freshman forward for the Marlins, has seen action in 16 games and tallied a pair of goals and an assist.

The Marlins, making their sixth straight NCAA appearance and seventh in the past eight years, will face Hamilton College in the opening round this weekend at Johns Hopkins University.




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