Catholic drops Eastern in debut
Cardinals’ Spuerruzza broke game open in second half
WASHINGTON -- Catholic made its NCAA tournament debut a successful one on Wednesday, downing Eastern 5-2. The Cardinals trailed 1-0 and 2-1, but outscored the Eagles 4-0 in the final 37:33 to earn their 17th win of the season, which ties the program record for victories.
Eastern took a 1-0 lead 6:05 into the game when Kelby Bolton found the back of the cage. Katie Lipsit got off a shot earlier in the Eagles’ possession, but CUA’s Megan Comunale made the save.
CUA wasted little time tying the contest at one, with a Kim Hermann score at the 7:40 mark off an assist by Tracey Scanlon.
With just over 12 minutes played, CUA was awarded back-to-back penalty corners and Maura Campbell eventually got off a shot, but it was blocked, keeping the score 1-1.
Two consecutive penalty corners by Eastern around the 20-minute mark led to a shot by Bolton, but Comunale was once again there for the stop.
At the 29:27 mark the Eagles pulled in front when Yvonne Herbster found the back of the cage following a penalty corner. Brittany Moyer assisted on the score.
Once again, CUA wasted little time in getting the equalizer, scoring just three minutes later on Hermann’s second goal of the game. The teams took their 2-2 tie into halftime.
The second half was a different story for CUA, as the Cardinals outshot Eastern by a commanding 21-0 count and they were awarded five of the six penalty corners.
Cassie Sperruzza gave the Cardinals their first lead of the game at the 35:54 mark. Campbell assisted on the score, which came following a penalty corner.
Scanlon then made it a 4-2 game when she scored her 11th goal of the season at the 39:48 mark.
With less than four minutes remaining, Sperruzza put this one away when she knocked in her second score of the game to make it 5-2. Swarthout assisted on the goal, which was not only Sperruzza’s second of the game, but also the entire season.
The Cardinals finished with a 31-4 advantage in shots and a 13-6 lead in penalty corners. Comunale stopped two shots in goal for CUA, while Eastern keeper Sara Blaylock did all she could to keep the Eagles in it, with 14 saves.