Merigliano's late scoring surge helps Union (N.Y.) upset No. 20 Babson
BABSON PARK, Mass. -- Junior Nicole Merigliano scored twice in the final eight minutes, helping Union rally to stun No. 20 Babson 5-4 in non-conference action on Sunday.
Merigliano's two scores along with sophomore Hannah Najar's goal helped the Dutchwomen erase a late 4-2 deficit and push their record to 4-7. The loss snapped the Beavers' six-game winning streak and drops them to 9-3 overall.
Union produced the game's first two scoring chances in the opening five minutes. Just 68 seconds into the action Merigliano took a pass from freshman Molly Cohen and fed the ball to Allison Troy just outside the right post but her attempt was denied by Babson goalkeeper Kayla Florence.
The Beavers got on the board first as junior Morgan Lockwood took a pass from classmate Alex Cabreros and hit a hard shot over the shoulder of Union goalkeeper Molly McCune at the 9:28 mark to go up 1-0.
The Dutchwomen came right back, tying the game just under four minutes later as sophomore Emily Finneran burst through the arc and tipped a pass from Najar past Florence to tie the game at one. The deadlock was short-lived, as junior Julia Pochini recorded a goal, and Lockwood followed with her team leading 15th goal of the season on a penalty stroke at 19:08 to put Babson up 3-1.
Union trimmed the lead just under five minutes later as Troy scored her third goal of the season at the 23:55 mark. Merigliano started the play by drawing a penalty corner. On the corner, Moran's shot from just inside the arc was knocked down, but Troy was able to tip home the rebound inside the right post. Two late saves by McCune kept the score at 3-2.
Both teams struggled to muster any offensive punch in the early portion of the second half, but Babson appeared to take control of the game when Malone scored her ninth goal of the season, tipping home a pass from Caberos, to extend the lead to 4-2 with 17:26 remaining. Union cut the deficit to 4-3 on the first of Merigliano's two goals at the 61:46 mark.
The Dutchwomen tied the game, for the first time since early in the first half, when Najar knocked in a rebound with 4:23 remaining. Following a penalty corner, Florence made a diving save to stop Troy's initial blast but Najar got a stick on the rebound to tie the game. Just 1:22 later, Merigliano put Union ahead for good, as she gained control of a loose ball and found the open net for the game-winner.
McCune made nine saves for Union while Florence made seven stops for Babson. The Beavers held a slim 14-12 advantage in shots, and an 8-3 edge in penalty corners.