WASHINGTON – Natalie Konerth scored the game-winning goal with 2:15 left to play to lift 19th-ranked American field hockey to a 2-1 win over Kent State in an NCAA Play-In Game Wednesday at Jacobs Field.
The victory gave the Patriot League champions a 14-6 overall record and extended a winning streak to three matches.
The Golden Flashes, champions of the Mid-American Conference, ended their season at 14-7.
Junior midfielder Samantha McCormick finished with a goal and an assist for the Eagles, who led an 11-4 edge in shots and an 11-2 advantage in penalty corners.
Following a corner in the final minutes, McCormick found Konerth open at the right post and she drove in the game-winner from close range. It was the senior's team-high 14th goal of the season.
Junior Ines Delpech put the Golden Flashes ahead in the 21st minute, scoring off penalty-corner assists from Jessica Nesbitt and Silvia Figa Malgosa. Kent State kept the 1-0 lead despite AU's 6-3 edge in shots.
McCormick evened the match for the Eagles at the 51:43 mark when she also converted penalty-corner assists from Rachel Stefano and Haley Bowcutt. AU had all eight penalty-corner chances in the second half.
Sophomore Maura Jacobs needed two saves to get the win in the Eagles' net, while Andrea Rinehart had three saves for Kent State.
American travels to Duke on Saturday to face the top-seeded Blue Devils in a first-round match at 2 p.m.