No. 7 Hamilton Sneaks Past Wesleyan in Overtime

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (March 11) - Sophomore Katie D'Antonio scored her third goal of the game with :05.9 left in overtime to provide the margin of victory as No. 7 Hamilton snuck past homestanding Wesleyan, 11-10, in the first meeting of the teams in 20 years.

Both teams evened their overall and NESCAC records at 1-1 for the season. Wesleyan returns to action Wed., March 14, hosting non-conference rival Eastern Connecticut while Hamilton plays again Thurs., March 15 at Buffalo St. in a non-conference affair.

Wesleyan led much of the game and held a 7-4 advantage early in the second half before the Continentals took their first lead of the contest with 16:44 to go in the second half on a pass from behind the net by junior Rachel Friedman to senior Libby Schultz for a high shot. That capped a four-goal Hamilton run over a span of 6:01, giving the visitors an 8-7 lead.

Wesleyan evened the count on a goal by sophomore Maddy Coulter just 1:16 later as she slung in a waist-high shot from the right side off a feed by junior Kayla Ellman. Hamilton wasted little time regaining the lead as Freidman collared the draw control and raced downfield to bounce in her second goal of the game 14 ticks later.

The Continentals held the lead for 9:12, with almost half the time passing as sophomore goalie Dewi Caswell, who finished with 10 saves, stood uncontested near her goal looking to start a clear. Wesleyan eventually got the ball back, however, and junior Kaylin Berger netted her fourth goal of the game and 10th of the year at 6:02. She knocked the ball free from Caswell's stick behind the Hamilton net and out of bounds, then outraced Caswell to the goal after the restart to tuck the ball in. There was no further scoring before the end of regulation though Hamilton had the ball for the final 1:30 in the Wesleyan end but could not get off a shot.

In overtime, Hamilton struck first, winning the draw and setting up Freidman for her hat trick, and fifth goal of the campaign, 44 seconds into the stanza. Wesleyan did much the same to open the second three-minute OT period as senior Liz Chabot collected the draw and raced goalward, then deposited a high bouncer just under the crossbar with 2:48 to go. Hamilton then won the draw but turned the ball over in the Wesleyan end.

The Cardinals were unable to clear and Hamilton got the ball back. Friedman was denied by Wesleyan senior goalie Maggie Drowica, who picked up her 13th save, and Wesleyan got the loose ball. Again, Wesleyan failed to clear and Hamilton had possession with 1:13 to go. The Continentals ran the clock down under 30 seconds before getting its offense in gear, and Schultz got the ball behind the net, running to the left side before finding a streaking D'Antonio with her pass. D'Antonio ran a few steps into a crowd and sent a low shot into the net for the winner, her fifth goal of the year.

Wesleyan had built a 4-1 lead by the 12:33 mark of the first half as Berger netted a pair along with goals from freshman Leah Sherman and Chabot. Friedman got her first goal of the game to break up the Wesleyan surge after it stood 3-0. Then Hamilton tied the game with a trifecta in a span of 4:20, the first two goals coming from D'Antonio while freshman Madison Beres capped the run. Wesleyan got the final two goals of the half for a 6-4 edge at intermission.

Berger completed her first-half hat trick followed by a goal from Ellman with a high shot at 2:05. When Chabot opened the second half scoring with a low shot at 25:24, the Cardinals equaled their largest lead of the game at three, 7-4. In total, Wesleyan led for 38:50 during the contest while Hamilton held the edge for 13:02 and never led by more than a goal. The teams were tied for 14:08 in the only the second-ever meeting of the squads and first since a 14-6 Hamilton victory in Florida during the 1992 season.


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