BETHLEHEM, Pa. - The Lehigh field hockey team came back from a 3-1 halftime deficit to force overtime, but Holy Cross scored 9:46 into the extra session to hand the Mountain Hawks a heartbreaking 5-4 defeat on Saturday, in the Patriot League opener for both sides. Freshman Lindsey Schott and sophomore Lindsay Metzger tied the score in the second half, but it wasn’t enough. Lehigh returns to action in less than 24 hours when it heads to Rider to face the Broncs.
“We played really well in the second half,” said Lehigh head coach Susan Ciufo. “We were down by two at halftime and came back. We definitely fought hard. Overtime was back and forth; we had a number of opportunities but couldn’t convert.”
Sophomore Steph Fratoni gave Lehigh an early lead just 4:54 into the game when she redirected a pass from senior Kim Eng past Holy Cross goalie Kat Matchett.
After almost 20 minutes of scoreless action which featured few shots, Holy Cross exploded for three goals in 6:53 to take a 3-1 lead into halftime. Michelle McNeil scored the second and third goals for the Crusaders.
Lehigh came out of halftime strong, pulling within 3-2 when junior Emily Torcivia took a pass from freshman Erin Ricker and backhanded one past Matchett at 39:16. Less than six minutes later, the Mountain Hawks netted the equalizer behind Schott’s first-career goal, stuffing in a rebound at 45:51. In doing so, she became the fourth Lehigh freshman to score a goal this season and fifth to record a point.
However, just 36 seconds later, Holy Cross earned a penalty stroke and Mean Bourne converted to give Holy Cross a 4-3 advantage.
The Mountain Hawks evened the score for a second time at the 55:28 mark when Metzger’s initial shot was saved, but she poked home the rebound to make it 4-4.
Neither side could score for the rest of regulation, but not for a lack of chances. Sophomore goalie Sydney Maltinsky-Wilson made a pair of glittering saves with around 10 minutes remaining to preserve the tie and send the game to overtime.
Lehigh picked up some glittering chances in overtime. Less than two minutes in, Torcivia had a glittering chance which looked ticketed for the back of the cage, but Matchett was there for the save. The Mountain Hawks would take four more shots (two on goal), but couldn’t convert. Holy Cross went on to capitalize off an odd-man break as sophomore goalie Sydney Maltinsky-Wilson made a big save of a Carly Grimaudo shot, but Grimaudo put home the rebound to give the Crusaders the win.
“It all comes down to coming out from the very beginning,” said Ciufo. “We got on the board first and just needed to keep the momentum going. We let up and started playing a little frantic.”
Lehigh held the edge in shots (18-15) and penalty corners (10-1). Maltinsky-Wilson and freshman Sophie Fitzpatrick combined for six saves while Matchett finished with seven for Holy Cross.
The Mountain Hawks will look to bounce back on Sunday when they travel to Rider to face the Broncs. Gametime is set for 12 p.m.
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Lehigh field hockey team is organizing the First Annual Lehigh Valley Fox Trot 5K for Parkinson’s Research. The event will take place on Sunday, Oct. 28 at 11 a.m. Please click here to make a donation and sign up today.