Springfield, Mass. - March 20, 2021 - Competing for the first time in 377 days, the Springfield College women's lacrosse team used a free position goal from Taylor Pichel (Hopkinton, Mass.) just 1:17 into overtime to defeat Babson, 14-13, on Stagg Field on Saturday in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play.
In a rematch of the 2019 NEWMAC Championship, the Pride dominated draw controls winning 19 of 29, including the crucial draw control in the overtime period. For the game, Springfield held a 30-26 edge in shots and limited Babson to 11-of-18 on clear attempts.
Offensively, Kate Sarnacki (Granby, Mass.) was sensational for Springfield as she delivered seven goals and one assist. Pichel and Katie Martel (Hartland, Conn.) each netted hat tricks and Jamie Jutras (Litchfield, N.H.) finished the day with two assists. Defensively, Colleen Browne (Westford, Mass.) made seven saves in her first collegiate start, while teammate Gabby Fogg (Wells, Maine) had a team-high seven draw controls and Sarnacki caused three turnovers.
Juliana McGuire led the way for the Beavers netting four goals in the loss. Siobhan McDermott had six draw controls and also added a goal, while Babson's goalie Cricket Fligor totaled 12 stops between the pipes.
Babson's Georgia Salvatore got loose from behind the cage for the first goal of the contest at the 26:55 mark. Springfield quickly responded with a free-position goal from Sarnacki and an incredible individual effort from Martel to go up 2-1 with 22:42 left in the frame. Babson would respond to push their lead to 5-3 following consecutive free-position goals that came on a man advantage with 9:23 on the clock, before the Pride rattled off four goals in a 4:25 span to own a 7-5 advantage at the break. The spurt featured a pair of strikes from Sarnacki and markers from both Pichel and Maddy Roy (Wilbraham, Mass.).
Back-to-back strikes from Claudia Dodge just 40 seconds apart would even the game up at 8-8, only to have Martel kickstart another four-goal run at the 22:03 mark as Sarnacki would take over, netting three-consecutive goals of her own to push the Pride's advantage to 12-8 with 9:22 left in regulation. However, Babson made the most of another man advantage, pouring in four goals in just 2:55 to make it a 12-all contest with under four minutes to play. Pichel would put the Pride back on top with a free-position goal with 2:37 to play, but McGuire would take advantage of a Pride failed clear and score in transition with 29 seconds left to force overtime.
In the extra session, the Pride came up with a huge draw control win from Sarnacki that led to Pichel drawing a foul in the arch. Pichel then delivered the game-winning strike to lift the Pride to it season-opening victory.
Springfield College travels to Coast Guard on March 27 for their second game of the season.
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