Herons Rally But Drop Heartbreaker to St. Lawrence

TROY, N.Y.-William Smith rallied from seven-goal first half deficit to get within one, but the Herons fell to St. Lawrence 12-11 in a Liberty League semifinal at Rensselaer this afternoon. Senior Kathleen Ragan led the William Smith effort with four goals, two assists and five ground balls.

The No. 3 seed Herons finished the season with a 10-7 overall record. St. Lawrence, the No. 2 seed, advances to take on top-seeded Rensselaer in the Liberty League tournament championship tomorrow, May 4. The Engineers defeated No. 4 seed Vassar in the other semifinal.

Sophomore Katie Sipple added two goals and three assists for William Smith. Senior Marissa Potter chipped in two goals. Sophomore Rachel Hughes shared a team-high with five ground balls and caused two turnovers. Senior Katie Dexter scored a goal and classmate Liz Seidel produced two ground balls, a caused turnover and two draws. First-year Marina Guigli played all 60 minutes in goal and finished with eight saves.

The Class of 2013, Ragan, Potter, Dexter and Seidel, led the Herons to two Liberty League tournament appearances and 33 victories over the past four years.

Brigid Hurley led St. Lawrence with three goals. Stephanie O'Rourke and Mackenzie Collins each posted two goals. Carly VanTassel produced a goal and an assist. O'Rourke and Rogers each tallied a team-high four ground balls. Holly Noyes won a game-high four draws. Adden Cunningham played all 60 minutes in goal and made six saves.

Just 38 seconds into the game, Collins put St. Lawrence on the board. At 1:39, Dexter tied the game at one, pushing in a shot that trickled over the goal line. The Saints then took control scoring seven unanswered goals to take an 8-1 lead. O'Rourke chipped in two goals in the surge and Collins added her second of the game. With 4:45 left in the first, Ragan fed Sipple to make it 8-2. A little over a minute later, Ragan set up Potter to cut the St. Lawrence lead to five at the break.

Just 25 seconds into the second, Joey Kelley made it 9-3 for the Saints. At 1:46, first-year Hannah Connolly dished a quick pass to Potter who fired into the back of the net to cut the St. Lawrence lead to five for a second time. Once again, the Saints responded this time with a Hurley goal at 3:10 into the second.

The game then started to shift in favor of the Herons. William Smith scored five out of the next six goals to make it 11-9. At 4:16, Ragan went hard to the goal from the right side and sent home her shot into the left side of the net to make it 10-5.First-year Kate Bryne got the Herons within four with her fourth goal of the season on a shot from right in front. At 9:22, Hurley chipped in her third of the game to make it 11-6.

At 16:16 into the second, Sipple sent in a pass to Ragan, who drilled in her shot to put the Herons within four once again. Ragan followed with her third goal of the game on a free position shot into the top right corner of the goal to cut the Saints lead to 11-8. It was Ragan's 40th goal this year and third of the day. With 12:10 remaining, Sipple came out from behind the goal, ducked by her defender and fired a shot into the top right corner of the net to make it 11-9.

A diving shot by St. Lawrence's VanTassel ended the Heron run and put the Saints back on top by three. With 4:15 left to play, Sipple pushed a short pass across the front of the goal to find sophomore Abbie West. West sent in a low shot from right in front to get William Smith back within two at 12-10. Under a minute later, Sipple fed Ragan from behind the net. Ragan connected for her fourth of the game to make it 12-11, but the Saints held off the Herons in the final minutes of the game.

St. Lawrence held a 27-20 advantage in shots and a 13-11 edge in draws. The Herons recorded a 31-24 lead in ground balls. William Smith was successful on 13 of 19 clear attempts. The Saints finished 10 for 12.

2013-05-03



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