Gannon Wins Playoff Rematch at East Stroudsburg

EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. Sarah Grzybinski's (New Market, Md./Linganore) seven goals during the first 15 minutes of the second half propelled Gannon to a 20-13 victory at East Stroudsburg Tuesday afternoon in a rematch of last year's PSAC quarterfinal.

East Stroudsburg, which posted a 16-8 victory at Gannon University Field during the 2011 conference quarterfinals, came out of the gates Tuesday afternoon strong. The Warriors scored the contest's first three goals and lead 6-3 with 12:25 left in the first half.

Gannon's offense began to wake at that point, getting consecutive goals from Kimberly Neagle (Auburn, N.Y./Auburn) and Grzybinski to pull within 6-5 at the 10:32 mark.

The home squad momentarily stopped the mini-run with a Nicole Miller score, but Gannon proceeded to end the half on a 4-0 run. Four different Lady Knights scored during the late rally. Rachel DerCola (Rochester, N.Y./Brighton) tied the match at seven, before Neagle scored the go-ahead goal off an assist from Jess Fugate (Wooster, Ohio/Wooster) with 1:58 showing on the clock. Natalie Bonnepart (San Jose, Calif./Gunderson) then added another score with eight seconds left to send Gannon into the halftime break with a 9-7 advantage.

The end of the first half was the start of the end for East Stroudsburg. Gannon controlled the second half, opening the stanza with an 11-3 run. Grzybinski took over the match, scoring 27 seconds into the second half. She accounted for seven of Gannon's first eight goals during the final stanza. Her seventh goal of the half gave Gannon a 17-10 lead with 14:51 to play.

After Grzybinski's onslaught, Fugate sandwiched a Caitlyn Fisher (Wooster, Ohio/Wooster) goal with two of her own. A Fugate tally at the 7:53 mark capped a 15-3 run that spanned 27 minutes and 28 seconds of both halves. It also gave Gannon a 20-10 lead and producing a running clock.

East Stroudsburg regained its footing a bit by scoring the final three goals of the match, resulting in a 20-13 Gannon victory.

Gannon scored 20 goals for the second time this season, finishing two scores shy of the team's season-high total of 22 scored against Lake Erie. The Lady Knights produced advantages in shots (39-26), ground balls (25-20) and turnovers (15-26).

Grzybinski led the scoring attack with a career-high eight goals and six draw controls. The performance represented the most goals by a Lady Knight since Mary Eshenour netted eight goals March 1, 2011 at Pfeiffer (N.C.).

Fugate also finished with eight points, scoring three times and dishing out a team-high five assists. In all, Gannon had an assist on 14 of 20 goals. Fisher recorded one goal and four assists. DerCola had two goals and three assists.

Neagle recorded her sixth hat trick of the season with three goals and one assist. Bonnepart chipped in two scores off the bench while Christie Valentine (Friendship, Md./Annapolis Area Christian) added a single goal.

Margaret Maslyn (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) turned away eight shots in goal, including six during the final 30 minutes. The sophomore goalkeeper has recorded at least seven saves during all 10 matches this season.

Gannon improved to 6-4 overall and 4-1 in the PSAC with its fifth victory during the last six matches. The Lady Knights are one of four teams in the PSAC with only one league loss. All four teams sit one match behind undefeated IUP. East Stroudsburg dropped to 3-7 overall and 1-4 in conference action.

Head coach Lindsey Lowman's club return to action Friday, April 6 against Bloomsburg at Gannon University Field. Game time is scheduled for 5:00 p.m.


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