Kirsty Smith and Jenny Knibbs found the back of the net in the 61st and 62nd minute, respectively, as the Golden Tigers (8-5-3, 8-3 SSAC) locked up the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament that opens next Friday and Saturday, Nov. 4 and 5, with the quarterfinal round hosted by the league's top four seeds.
Brandi Greenwald scored her 10th goal of the season for Shorter (6-11, 6-6), which ended the day with the SSAC's No. 7 seed. The Lady Hawks will travel to fifth-ranked and No. 2 seed University of Mobile (15-2-1, 11-1) for next weekend's quarterfinal matchup.
Greenwald's goal came in the 11th minute and the Lady Hawks maintained their 1-0 lead through halftime, but Brenau finally broke through just over 15 minutes into the second half to surge into the lead.
Brenau, which snapped a two-game losing skid to Shorter and is now 3-7 all-time against the Lady Hawks, got six saves from goalkeeper Tori Brown and held a 17-14 advantage in shots -- 11-9 in the second half as the Golden Tigers completed their rally.
Shorter had to fend off seven corner kicks from Brenau and junior goalie Taylor Hays posted 10 saves for the second time this season -- Hays made 10 stops in a 2-1 loss to Faulkner earlier in the season and was forced into a career-high 12 saves in a loss to Webber International back in September.
Hays, already Shorter's all-time leader in saves with 248, broke her own single-season saves record of 84 as her 10 stops against Brenau brings her 2011 season total to 93.
Greenwald, who has scored in eight of Shorter's last 11 matches, now has 15 goals in two seasons with Shorter and stands in third place on Shorter's all-time goal scoring list behind Pauline Van Der Henst (32) and Candace Edwards (16). Greenwald moved past Rachel Wood for the third spot with her goal against Emmanuel.
For the second straight game, Shorter's leading scorer Aline Bez Tamiosso was held without a goal despite leading Shorter in shots with four. Tamiosso has managed just six shots in two games since her hat trick in a 5-2 win over Emmanuel on Oct. 22, the conclusion of a run of seven goals in four matches.
Shorter's tournament seeding means that it would avoid a potential matchup with three-time defending national champion Lee University until the championship match.
Still, the Lady Hawks will have to navigate through a Mobile squad that dealt them a 6-1 defeat in Alabama on Sept. 23. The winner of the Shorter-Mobile matchup is paired with the winner of Brenau and sixth-seed William Carey, whom the Lady Hawks defeated 2-1 in Rome on Oct. 1.
Shorter closes out the regular season on Tuesday, Nov. 1 when it plays host to Young Harris College at 7 pm on Ben Brady Field.