SHELTON, Conn.— The Sacred Heart women's hockey earned a 5-4 overtime win over Franklin Pierce on Friday night at the Sports Center of Connecticut. Senior forward Meghan Kebalka buried the game winning goal with 52 seconds left in overtime.
Junior Haley Payne led the Pioneers with three points on one goal and two assists and a plus-four rating. SHU featured five different goal scorers with Payne, Brittany Smith, Taylor Moreland, Marissa Letizio and Kebalka all finding the back of the net.
Payne got the scoring going with her goal at 11:54 in the first period as she buried the rebound from Smith's shot from the slot.
Franklin Pierce scored shortly after as Bridgette Prentiss forced the Pioneers turnover along the halfboard. Kelsey Ryan collected the puck and drove into the SHU zone. She knuckled one past SHU goaltender Devan Kane to tie it at 1-1. SHU responded less than a minute later with Smith & Payne connecting once again, this time the senior with her second goal of the season.
The Pioneers followed that up with a two-goal second period as Letizio picked up the goal from the blue line at 3:19. Moreland followed that up with her goal at 4:26 from the assists by Payne and Jayne Lewis.
The third period belonged to the Ravens who picked up three goals in the final period of regulation. SHU penalties allowed Franklin Pierce to get within one as Nicole Amato and Alex Brolsma netted power play goals.
SHU earned its lone power play in the final minute of the third period looking to add an insurance tally. Franklin Pierce didn't back down as they forced the Pioneers turnover and worked the puck into the Sacred Heart zone. Haley Parker snuck in the back handed shot at 19:27 to tie the game at 4-4.
In overtime, SHU continued on the power play but was unsuccessful in the opening minute. The Pioneers continued to work the puck and had two opportunities on net before Kebalka buried the game winner from the left circle.
SHU outshot Franklin Pierce 24-22 on the night. The Ravens went 2-for-4 on the power play while the Pioneers went 0-for-1. Kane recorded 18 saves in goal for the Pioneers and Kelly Turney made nine stops for Franklin Pierce.
The Pioneers wrap up the weekend series against the Ravens on Saturday with a 6:30 start at the Sports Center of Connecticut.