NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Playing in their final regular season game of the 2019 campaign, the Sacred Heart field hockey team fell to Georgetown, 2-0, on Sunday morning from Johnson Field. The Pioneers head into postseason play with a 5-14 mark on the season while the Hoyas complete their 2019 season with a record of 6-13.
On a chilly fall afternoon, both teams were limited on the offensive end as the two sides combined for just 16 total shots (seven on-goal) with five penalty corners between the two teams. Georgetown's defense and midfield play held the Pioneers to just one shot in the second half while the Pioneers failed to generate a penalty corner in the final 30 minutes of play.
Georgetown took control of the game from the onset as the Hoyas were gifted a penalty stroke in the fifth minute. Emily Fraser made no mistake on her attempt, beating a diving Hailey Power to the left of the cage as the Hoyas led 1-0 with more than 10 minutes left in the opening quarter.
SHU registered their first shot of the game with less than 10 minutes to go in the second quarter as Makenna Crawford saw her attempt from distance turned aside by the Hoyas' goalkeeper Ciara Weets. A clear chance came for SHU in the closing minutes of the period as back-to-back penalty corners led to three shots on-goal, all saved by Weets.
That momentum from the three Weets saves turned into a crucial goal for Georgetown as Anna Farley possessed on the near side and found Michaela Bruno open in the SHU defensive half. Taking the pass in-stride, Bruno carried into the circle and lofted a shot past Power into the top right corner as the SHU goalkeeper had no chance at saving the goal that put the Hoyas up 2-0.
Even with the two-goal deficit, SHU came out pressing to start the second half and appeared to pull one goal back midway through the third quarter as Kelsy Hopkins fired in a shot at the top of the circle with her opposite hand. Just as it appeared the Pioneers were back to within one of the lead, the referee blew the play dead and disallowed the goal as Hopkins was inches outside of the circle on her shot attempt.
Georgetown controlled play after the disallowed goal and held the Pioneers without a shot and penalty corner for the remaining 20+ minutes of play.
Power took the loss in the cage, finishing with one save and two goals allowed in 30 minutes of action. Alyssa Stevens came on in the second half and registered one save with no goals allowed for the Pioneers.
Five different players registered one goal on-goal for SHU while Bruno and Cami Osborne combined for eight of the 11 shot attempts for Georgetown on the day.
SHU heads into postseason play for the second consecutive season and is set to face top-seeded Fairfield on Friday, November 8th in the semifinal round hosted by Wagner College. This marks the first time the Pioneers have advanced to the conference postseason tournament in consecutive seasons since 2007-08.
The Stags come in nationally-ranked at No. 24 and have won nine straight games as Fairfield stands 16-2 overall and finished 6-0 in NEC regular season play. The Pioneers' defense, however, gave the Stags everything they could handle with a 1-0 overtime loss at home back on Oct. 4. In that game, Fairfield outshot the Pioneers 22-1 but were held in-check for nearly the entire game by Power who racked up 14 saves in 65+ minutes of action.