Posted: November 4, 2005
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – In one of the most dramatic finishes ever seen at the Ulrich Sports Complex, Lehigh fell to Bucknell 6-5 in a shootout in the semifinals of the Patriot League Tournament on Friday evening, ending the Mountain Hawks dream of a Patriot League Championship.
The game-winning score in the shootout came from Shannon Curd, who also scored the Bison’s lone goal in regulation.
Patriot League Coach of the Year Manny Oudin offered his thoughts following the match.
“We created enough opportunities for ourselves tonight.
I though (junior) Gina (Lewandowski) had her share of chances.
We’re confident in our abilities and we were resilient in the way we came back.
It’s just a tough way to lose, especially for our two seniors.”
Bucknell got on the board first when Curd scored her second goal of the season at the 33:52 mark off of a feed from Kerry Fitz-Patrick on a nice cross pass in front of the net. Lehigh had several scoring chances in the first half, but could not find the back of the net, sending the game to halftime with the Bison in front 1-0. Lehigh out shot the Bison 4-3 in the half and had five corner kicks, while Bucknell had zero.
In the second half, Lehigh was able to tie the match, as Lewandowski took a feed from classmate Meghan Duesing and tapped the ball over Bucknell goal keeper Katie Dry’s head at the 63:29 mark. The crowd at Ulrich erupted, and Lehigh had life. The Mountain Hawks continued to apply pressure on offense, but despite unleashing eight shots, did not score again, sending the game into overtime.
The first overtime went by with no goals scored, as did the second, setting up the shoot out. In the shoot out, the teams went through the first five players, but were tied at four goals apiece, as Dry and Lehigh keeper Brittany Besler, who came in for the shoot out, both made spectacular saves to prolong the process. Curd then found the back of the net on her shot, but Lehigh missed its chance, sending Bucknell onto the championship.
For the game, Lehigh out shot the Bison 16-7, and had 11 corner kicks to Bucknell’s three. Julie Kafka, who started in goal, registered three saves, while Dry wound up with seven. Lehigh was whistled for 14 fouls, and Bucknell only five.
Oudin did not hang his head following the loss, looking back on the accomplishments of the entire season. “You have to give Bucknell credit, they fought hard all night, as did we. This is just tough for our players because right now, they’re hurting. But in a few days, they’ll look back at this and realize how sensational of a season we had.”
Bucknell now moves onto Sunday’s Patriot League Championship, scheduled for a one o'clock start from the Ulrich Sports Complex. The Bison will play third-seeded Army, after the Black Knights downed No. 2 Colgate, 1-0 in the other semifinal match.