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Plymouth State Field Hockey captures ECAC New England Championship

 

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Junior Lilly Silva (Lowell, Mass.) scored her third goal of the game seven minutes into the first overtime Thursday afternoon at Arold Field, leading top-seeded Plymouth State University to a 3-2 victory over second-seeded Wellesley College in the championship game of the 2004 ECAC New England Division III Field Hockey Tournament, presented by FieldTurf.

            The victory gives the Panthers their second ECAC Field Hockey championship, and first since 1987.  Plymouth completes the year with an 18-4 overall record, establishing a new PSU standard for wins in a season.  Wellesley concludes its season with a 14-6 mark.

            The visitors battled back from a 2-0 deficit in the final 15 minutes of regulation to force overtime, but Silva proved to be too much for the Blue.

            After a scoreless first half, Silva scored two second half goals to give the hosts a 2-0 advantage with just under 15 minutes remaining.  She knocked home a ball from freshman Jenna Lace (Pascoag, R.I.) on the first goal with 23:53 on the clock, and one-timed a crossing pass from sophomore Christina Farias (East Dennis, Mass.) with 14:41 remaining.

            The Blue would not go quietly, as sophomore Julia Parzych (Auburn, Mass.) tallied two goals less than five minutes apart to even the score.  She picked up a loose ball and scored her first with 13:28 remaining, and added her second with 9:19 to play, taking a pass from senior Mira Patel (Wellesley, Mass.).

            The teams played seven-on-seven in overtime, and Silva redirected a pass from sophomore Melanie Bates (Derry, N.H.) six minutes, 57 seconds into the extra session for the game-winner.  It was her 27th goal of the season, leaving her one short of the school record set in 1981 by Terry Galley.

            PSU finished with a 24-14 advantage in shots.  Panther freshman goalie Katie Randall (Portsmouth, N.H.) made 11 saves, while Wellesley junior Caitlin Andrews (Edgecomb, Maine) made 13 saves.

            Plymouth State senior midfielder Caitlin Moran (Rowley, Mass.) was named the Most Outstanding Player.

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