Nov. 8, 2011
Box Score |
ATHENS, Ohio - Regulation time wasn't enough to determine a winner between Lafayette and Ohio on Tuesday afternoon at Pruitt Field. The Bobcats outlasted Lafayette, scoring 11:27 into overtime to earn a 2-1 victory and a berth in the NCAA Tournament.
Ohio's Jen Brown capitalized on a two-on-one situation and beat Lafayette goalkeeper Jessica Deutsch, sending the Mid-American Conference Champion into the field of 16.
"I thought the team put out another good performance," head coach Andrew Griffiths said. "I thought we had the better of the play early on, but ran out of legs later in the game. Its obviously disappointing to not be moving on, but I'm extremely proud of our players and staff. We have come a long way since the start of the season and I'm very happy with our effort level today."
The contest was a tale of two halves, with Lafayette controlling the action in the first 35 minutes and Ohio gaining the better of play in the second frame. Ohio rode the momentum into overtime and finally scored after outshooting Lafayette 4-0 in the extra session.
Aside from one scoring chance in front early in the first half, Ohio was unable to get anything going offensively. Lafayette, the Patriot League Champions, dominated the possession and finally cracked the defense in the 24th minute. Maria Machalick ripped a shot from just outside the circle into a group of players, where Deanna DiCroce got her stick on the ball and redirected it into the top of the cage just under the crossbar. Officially, the goal came 23:28 into the opening half and Lafayette went into the break leading 1-0.
After halftime, Ohio took control of the game, outshooting Lafayette 9-2 in the half. The Bobcats earned eight penalty corners, compared to just two for the Leopards, and scored on a set piece. Jessica Jue inserted a corner to the top of the circle for Laura Mastro who stopped it for Taylor Brown. Brown fired a shot that beat Deutsch, evening the score at 1-1 at the 46:46 mark.
The Leopards held off Ohio's pressure in the final minutes of the half and went into overtime all square at 1-1. Less than 30 seconds into overtime, Jue picked up a yellow card and Lafayette had a chance to win with a five minute man advantage. The Bobcats survived the card and continued to apply pressure on the Leopards defense, which held strong for a majority of the afternoon.
At the 77:10 mark, Ohio's Jessica Vaeth had the game on her stick. Alone in front of the cage, Vaeth snapped a low shot toward the left post and Deutsch made a sprawling stick save to her right, one of five she made in the match.
Jen McGill earned the win in goal for the Bobcats, turning away three shots, two from Brittany Blass.
"I'm very appreciative of the support from our fans throughout the season and the number of fans we had at the game today," Griffiths added. "I recognize the dedication it takes to travel to our games and I would like to thank all the members of our Lafayette field hockey family."
Lafayette finishes the year 11-9 overall after winning its eighth Patriot League Championship and first since 2002.