#4/7 Stonehill Edges #17 Dowling in OT, 11-10

Junior Caitlin Sweeney led the Skyhawks with three goals, including a go-ahead marker in overtime. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

Kessel scores winning goal with 10-seconds to play in overtime, Sweeney nets three goals to lead Skyhawks 

EASTON, Mass. (March 31, 2015) – Senior Emily Kessel (Kennebunk, Maine/Kennebunk) scored with ten seconds remaining in overtime to lift Stonehill College, ranked No. 4 in this week's Nike/Lacrosse Magazine Top 20 and 7th in the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division II poll, to a key 11-10 overtime triumph against Dowling College, ranked 17th in both national polls, in non-conference women's lacrosse action on Timothy J. Coughlin Memorial Field at W.B. Mason Stadium tonight.

Kessel's winning goal came off the draw following a tying goal by Dowling junior Emma Ferreira (Sayville, New York/Sayville) just 29-seconds earlier as the teams combined for three goals over the final 1:45 of the extra frame. Stonehill rallied from a two goal deficit (7-5) with 13:45 remaining to force overtime and then after the first half of the overtime went scoreless when Dowling won the opening draw, the Skyhawks took the draw to start the final three minutes and worked their offense into a go-ahead marker by junior Caitlin Sweeney (Hollis, New Hampshire/Hollis-Brookline) with 1:45 left in overtime.

Sweeney led Stonehill with three goals and a caused turnover, while senior Cassandra McGill (Westborough, Massachusetts/Westborough) and junior Rebecca Matheson (Reading, Massachusetts/Reading Memorial) each netted two goals for the Skyhawks. McGill was a perfect 2-for-2 on free-position shots to go with two ground balls, a draw control and caused turnover, while Matheson chipped in with a draw. Senior Lizzie Lane (Sandwich, Massachusetts/Bishop Stang) added a goal and assist for the Skyhawks with five ground balls, two draws and three caused turnovers.

Kessel, senior Mikayla Couch (Towaco, New Jersey/DePaul Catholic) and sophomore Elizabeth Vetter (Great River, New York/East Islip) all contributed goals for Stonehill, while Vetter also tallied six draw controls.

Senior Ashley Armstrong (Northborough, Massachusetts/Algonquin Regional) preserved the win with nine saves, helping limit Dowling to just 2-for-10 on free-position attempts as she notched six of her nine stops on free-position shots. Dowling finished with a 24-19 advantage in shots for the game, but the Skyhawks converted 6-of-7 free-position shot attempts, and held a 14-11 edge in draw controls, including 4-1 in overtime. Sophomore Lauren Young (Centereach, New York/Centereach) posted six stops in the Dowling goal.

Senior Ashley Armstrong made six of her nine saves on free-position shot attempts to keep the Skyhawks in the game. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

Ferreira was among three Dowling players with three goals, while also contributing six draw controls, a ground ball and caused turnover. Junior Allie Merrill (Levittown, New York/Island Trees) and sophomore Katie Meinecke (Manorville, New York/Eastport South Manor) each added three goals for the Golden Lions, while senior Melissa Guglielmo (West Babylon, New York/West Babylon) collected eight ground balls and four caused turnovers. Senior Jackie Andersen (Shirley, New York/William Floyd) chipped in with a pair of assists.

Stonehill held a 5-4 halftime lead, but Dowling scored the first three goals of the second half to take a two goal advantage (7-5) after Meinecke's third goal of the contest with 13:45 to play. Merrill netted the first two goals of the half for the Golden Lions, the second of which was just 40-seconds prior to the Meinecke marker.

Stonehill followed with a pair of free-position goals from McGill and Lane just a minute and a half apart to pull even (7-7) with 10:26 to play. Merrill put Dowling back in front with her third goal of the half just over 30-second later and then Couch and McGill answered with back to back goals 45-seconds apart to regain the lead with 7:19 left. Ferreira equalized for the Golden Lions, assisted by Andersen, with 3:23 on the clock and then she collected the ensuing draw. Following a timeout, the Golden Lions turned the ball over and Stonehill was able to clear, but committed a turnover themselves and neither team was able to establish possession over the final 30-seconds to send the game into overtime.

Dowling won the opening draw of overtime but was unable to get a shot off over the first half of the six minute extra period. Stonehill won the draw to start the final three minutes of the overtime and then Sweeney put Stonehill on top with a free-position goal with 1:45 to play. Vetter collected the ensuing draw, but the Skyhawks turned the ball over with 1:23 to go. Dowling committed a turnover on the clear try, but Stonehill gave the ball right back, allowing Ferreira to equalize on a free-position shot with 39-seconds left. Stonehill again won the draw and immediately got into scoring position as Kessel's 15th goal of the year provided the winner with 10-seconds to go.

Sweeney and Matheson both netted a pair of first half goals to lead Stonehill to its 5-4 halftime lead as it erased an early 2-1 deficit with three straight goals. After Dowling responded with two straight goals of its own to pull even, Matheson gave the Skyhawks the halftime lead with her second of the half with 26-seconds left.

Stonehill (10-0, 7-0 NE-10) is right back in action on Thursday night when it returns to Northeast-10 Conference play to host American International College here at W.B. Mason Stadium at 7 p.m. Dowling (7-3, 3-0 ECC) visits Merrimack College on Thursday at 4 p.m.

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