Pioneers Claim NEC Regular Season Title in Come From Behind Fashion
April 17, 2010
FAIRFIELD, Conn. - The Sacred Heart University women's lacrosse team won the 2010 Northeast Conference regular season championship with a 9-5 victory over Quinnipiac on Campus Field, Saturday evening. The Pioneers completed a perfect 9-0 season in the conference and earned the right to host the NEC Tournament next weekend.
Sacred Heart grabbed its first lead of the game, at 5-4, with 6:02 remaining when sophomore Kate Kmiotek (Farmingville, N.Y.) tallied her third score of the night. The Bobcats came right back a minute later to tie the game on sophomore Devon Gibney's second of the contest. With 3:47 to go, senior midfielder Cori Horelik (South Windsor, Conn.) scored on a free position shot to put the Pioneers ahead for good. SHU would go on to add three more scores and put the game out of reach.
In the first half, Kmiotek got the Pioneers on the board first when she intercepted a pass on a clear attempt by QU. She immediately took the ball to the net and scored. The rest of the half was all Bobcats, as they outscored SHU 3-0 to take a 3-1 advantage at halftime.
The Pioneers cut the lead to one early on Kmiotek's second of the game. Six minutes later Quinnipiac senior Brittany Hauser marched up the center of the field and put her team back up by two with her first score of the year. Horelik recorded her first two scores of the game within a two minute span midway through the frame, to knot the game at four.
Tied at five, senior Carissa Hauser (East Northport, N.Y.) eluded her defender and appeared to give Sacred Heart the lead with 4:01 remaining, but the ball ricocheted off the post. Just seconds later Horelik found the back of the net with the game winner. Her fourth goal, and 28th of the season, was also a free position opportunity.
Sophomore Alyssa Dorsey (Massapequa, N.Y.) was the only other Pioneer, besides Horelik and Kmiotek, to score. Hauser picked up a pair of assists and collected four draw controls.
Senior netminder Chelsea Wagner (Aurora, Col.) made nine saves to record the win for Sacred Heart. In the cage for Quinnipiac, junior Lexi DeStefano stopped three shots.
The Bobcats outshot the Pioneers 21-20 for the game. SHU grabbed 16 ground balls, while QU collected 10.
The win also extended the Pioneers record long win streak to 10 games. This is Sacred Heart's third straight NEC regular season title, but first outright. It is also the second straight year that the Pioneers have claimed the top seed and will host the Northeast Conference Women's Lacrosse Tournament.
The tournament gets underway next Friday on Campus Field. Both semifinal games will be played then, with the championship bout slated for Sunday. Game times are yet to be determined.