Nov. 10, 2010

Courtesy of Stevens Athletics

HOBOKEN, N.J. -
Freshman Caitlin Chamberlain took a pass from sophomore Mary Nikish and scored 4:32 into overtime to lift the Stevens Institute of Technology field hockey team to an amazing, 1-0 win over SUNY Geneseo in the first round of the NCAA Division III Field Hockey Championship at the De Baun Athletic Complex in Hoboken, N.J. The Ducks will advance to face Eastern University on Saturday at Skidmore College.

The game was a defensive war as there were only 13 shot and 14 corners total. Stevens (11-10) ended with a slight, 7-6 edge in shots, and out-cornered the Blue Knights (18-2), 8-6.

The Stevens defense, which has been playing extremely well of late, shut out Geneseo for the first time all season. Senior Ellyn Griggs recorded her fifth clean sheet of the season, making one spectacular save with 12:26 left in the game. Geneseo forward Kelsey Horan (Endicott, N.Y.) received a cross from the right end line and Griggs made a horizontal stop, diving to her right to keep the game scoreless.

In the first half, neither team was able to muster anything offensively, as each squad took just two shots.

Stevens had the first quality scoring chance of the game when Chamberlain received a pass on the left side outside the circle and made a move towards the goal. She was able to create some space and hammer a shot but it clanged off the left post and bounced out of bounds.

Geneseo controlled the ball and field position early in the overtime period, but its two shots were not threatening.

With the ball in the middle third of the field, Stevens was able to create a turnover, and Nikish took the ball and raced down the middle into Blue Knight zone. The sophomore then led Chamberlain, who was running to her left, into the circle. The rookie controlled, blew by her defender, and ripped a shot against the grain into the lower-right corner for the game-winner. It was Chamberlains sixth goal of the season and team-high 15th point. The assist was Nikishs third of the season.

Caitlyn Dowell (Massapequa, N.Y.) took the loss for Geneseo. The sophomore was credited with one save on the day.

The Blue Knights were State University of New York Athletic Conference champions after defeating SUNY Cortland in the league championship game. Geneseo came into the contest on a 17-game winning streak and was last beaten on September 4 against Hamilton College.

Stevens will move on to play Eastern in a Regional semifinal at Skidmore at 1 p.m. on Saturday. With a win, the Ducks will advance to the Regional final against the winner of The College of New Jersey and Skidmore. Visit www.StevensDucks.com for a preview of the region on Friday.