Stevenson Holds off St. Mary's for One-Goal Win

OWINGS MILLS, Md. - Sparked by a goal from sophomore Amanda LeGar (Eldersburg, Md./Liberty), Stevenson used a 3-0 run late in the second half to post an 8-7 victory over former Capital Athletic Conference rival St. Mary's (Md.) Friday at Mustang Stadium.

Stevenson (2-1), who won its fourth-straight against the Seahawks after losing the first 13 in the series, improved its record to 7-1 in two seasons at Mustang Stadium and 5-3 in home openers under eighth-year head coach Kathy Railey.

The game featured five ties and six lead changes. With the Mustangs trailing 6-5, LeGar scored on a free position with 12:22 remaining to tie the game before sophomore Kathryn Merrick (Bel Air, Md./Forest Hill) gave Stevenson the lead for good with her second goal of the game just 44 seconds later.

Senior Megan Najewicz (Baltimore, Md./Perry Hall) scored the last of the Mustangs' three-goal spurt in a span of only 1:53 with what proved to be the game-winning goal with 10:29 to play.

The Seahawks' Taylor Sartor's unassisted goal with 1:33 left pulled the visitors within one, but freshman Morgan Gallagher (Yardley, Pa./Notre Dame) grabbed the ensuing draw control and Stevenson managed to run out the final 1:29 en route to winning its fifth home opener out of the last six.

The Mustangs, who led 4-2 at the half, held an 11-6 edge in draw controls and a 22-16 advantage in shots while getting two goals each from Merrick and junior Leah Warner (Pasadena, Md./Northeast). Sophomore Leanne Bittner (Baltimore, Md./Lock Raven) also made eight saves, including six in the second half.

LeGar finished with one goal, three ground balls and six draw controls. Senior Olivia Baker (Perry Hall, Md./Catholic) had four caused turnovers while sophomore Meg Gill (White Hall, Md./Hereford) added three.

Shelby Newman and Emily Shafer each had two goals and one assist for St. Mary's (2-4) while Michelle Dimenna had 10 saves.

Stevenson begins its two-game California road trip next Wednesday, March 13 when it faces Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at 10:00 p.m., Eastern time.

* * * *

Owings Mills, Md. St. Mary's dropped a heartbreaking 8-7 non-conference decision to host Stevenson Friday night. Stevenson picked up its second straight win by holding off the Seahawks' late rally.

Senior attacker Emily Shafer (Leonardtown, Md./Leonardtown) and first-year midfielder Shelby Newman (Hampstead, Md./Manchester Valley) commanded St. Mary's offense with three points each on two goals and an assist.

Newman put the Seahawks (2-4) on the board first as Shafer assisted on the goal at 23:17. Stevenson (2-1) responded with two goals in under a three-minute span to stage a 2-1 lead at 14:57. Sophomore midfielder Daniella Hanacek (Rockville, Md./T.S. Wootton) evened up the score 75 seconds later off an assist from first-year midfielder Brynn Miller (Frederick, Md./Urbana).

The Mustangs headed into halftime with a 4-2 advantage following scores from attackers Kathryn Merrick (Bel Air, Md.) and Marissa Meiklejohn (Severn, Md.). Five turnovers in the final 8:43 of the first half kept St. Mary's at a two-goal deficit.

Merrick and junior attacker Leah Warner (Pasadena, Md.) paced Stevenson with two goals each.

The Seahawks regrouped during intermission and opened up the second half with a 4-1 run to claim a 6-5 margin at 16:16. Shafer scored twice in a span of 1:09, including just 42 seconds into the start of the second stanza. Less than four minutes later, Stevenson answered with three straight goals in less than two minutes to regain the lead and an 8-6 advantage at 10:29.

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