College field hockey: Louisville rallies to upend No. 7 Syracuse in double overtime
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Taylor Stone's penalty stroke in the fourth minute of double overtime lifted the 12th ranked University of Louisville field hockey team to a 2-1 win over No. 7 Syracuse in an ACC matchup Friday evening at Trager Stadium. With their third straight win over a top-15 opponent, the Cardinals move to 5-0 at Trager Stadium this season.
Freshman Madison Walsh delivered her first career goal during a penalty corner with no time left on the clock at the end of regulation as the Cardinals erase a 1-0 deficit and junior Ayeisha McFerran collected five saves in the game to help Louisville (7-4) improve to 2-1 in ACC play.
Syracuse (8-3, 1-3 ACC) jumped to a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute of the game when Laura Hurff powered a reverse stick shot from the top of the circle into the cage.
The Orange took the 1-0 lead into halftime after holding a 4-2 edge in shots. Neither team was awarded penalty corner in the first half.
The second half featured a resurgent Cardinal offense which tallied eight shots, four on goal, while holding Syracuse to two. The final five minutes of regulation featured a competitive battle from both teams. A yellow card issued to Syracuse's Emma Tufts had the Orange short-handed for the final five minutes of regulation. Louisville's Katie Walsh soon joined her with a green card which saw both teams with 10 players on the field.
With 34 seconds left to play in regulation, McFerran was lifted in favor of an extra field player and the Cardinals promptly earned a penalty corner which was played out as time expired. Freshman Marisa Martin Pelegrina got the corner started and freshman Meghan Schneider provided the stop, but the Syracuse defense held off a shot attempt by Stone. Senior Abby Grimes collected a feed from Stone and directed a shot toward the cage. Madison Walsh was positioned on the right post and redirected the shot into the cage for her first career goal which tied the score at 1-1 and sent the game into a 7v7 15-minute overtime period.
In the first overtime, McFerran posted three saves to hold the Orange at bay as they tallied a 4-2 advantage in shots. Both of Louisville's shots were on goal as van der Velde registered two stops of her own to keep the score knotted at 1-1.
The teams entered a second 15-minute sudden-victory period. Four minutes into the OT, the Cards earned a penalty corner. Senior Nicole Woods deflected shot from Grimes past van der Velde, but was kicked by a Syracuse defender before it entered the cage resulting in a penalty stroke being awarded to the Cardinals. Taylor Stone stepped up to the line and calmly delivered a shot into the right corner of the cage to seal the victory.
No. 12 Cards take down No. 7 Syracuse in double OT! pic.twitter.com/EenFagpbDX— Louisville FH (@ULFieldHockey) September 29, 2017
"We didn't start well," said UofL head coach Justine Sowry. "They're a good team and when you start that tentatively, it's never going to be good. They took it to us from the get-go and they scored very early in the contest. We didn't play our best hockey as the game wore on, even going into halftime. Our fundamentals let us down, but that really is a testament to the pressure that they put us under. They defend in numbers, they're very smart players, but we're a resilient group. I thought Ayeisha McFerran was outstanding again today in keeping the ball out of the net and Taylor Stone was cool as ice… she stepped up to the line and finished it strong."
In the game, the Cards outshot the Orange 14-10 and held a 4-2 edge in corners. McFerran finished with five saves while van der Velde had eight stops for Syracuse.
This marks the second straight overtime game in the series between the two teams. The 2016 meeting saw Syracuse overcome a 1-0 deficit in the second half with an overtime penalty stroke giving the Orange the win. This year, the Cardinals avenged that loss in similar fashion in double overtime.
The Cardinals return to action Sunday when they play host to Central Michigan at 1 p.m.