ECAC Champs! PSU Field Hockey nips BSU in OT to claim title

Colborn's overtime goal caps Panther comeback

            BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Third-seeded Plymouth State State University erased a two-goal second-half deficit Sunday afternoon as the Panthers defeated top-seeded Bridgewater State University, 4-3, in overtime to capture the 2012 ECAC Division III New England Field Hockey Tournament championship.

            Senior forward Olivia Colborn (Lancaster, N.H.) garnered tournament Most Outstanding Player honors as she scored the game-winning goal just two minutes and five seconds into the overtime period. Colborn also tallied a pair of goals in the Panthers' 2-1 semifinal victory over #2 Keene State College on Saturday.

            The ECAC Tournament championship marks the second in the last three years for the Panthers who also defeated the Bears for the title in 2010.  Plymouth also eliminated Bridgewater in the 2011 semifinals.

            Bridgewater State junior forward Carissa Vizakis (Bellingham, Mass.) tallied a pair of goals and an assist to lead the Bears.  Vizakis opened the scoring in the ninth minute of play as she found the back of the net off the rebound of a Shelby Farland (Fiskdale, Mass.) shot.  Less than 10 minutes later, Vizakis converted her 14th goal of the season thanks to some outstanding passing by classmate Demi Miskiv (Centerville, Mass.) and senior forward Beth Phillips (Worcester, Mass.).  Phillips started the play with a cross inside the circle to Miskiv who slid a pass to an open Vizakis stationed in front.  Vizakis easily one-timed a shot into the unguarded net.

            Plymouth had a glorious chance to get on the scoreboard in the 22nd minute, but sophomore midfielder Nikki Garvey's (Canaan, N.H.) attempt missed wide to the left. Garvey, however, would get the Panthers on the board and cut the deficit to 2-1 just three minutes later as she knocked in the ball out of midair off a cross from junior forward Jackie Morin (Scarborough, Maine).  The teams would head to the intermission with Bridgewater maintaining the one-goal advantage.

            The Bears would reclaim their two-goal lead just under two minutes into the second half with  Miskiv notching her 19th marker of the year off an assist from Vizakis.

  Colborn was named MVP

The Panthers, however, would come roaring back on an unassisted goal by junior midfielder Lauren Carroll (Rollinsford, N.H.) in the 42nd minute.  Morin then notched the equalizer off a penalty corner with just 4:57 remaining in regulation with Carroll picking up her first of two assists on the day.

            Miskiv had a terrific opportunity to win the game just over a minute into the overtime on a two-on-one situtation but was robbed by Plymouth junior goaltender Hilary Lemelin (Milan, N.H.). Moments later, Colborn ended it with a shot that found its way though a couple of defenders and beat the screened Bridgewater netminder between the pads.

            Lemelin made 12 saves between the pipes for the Panthers, while BSU senior Cassie Johansen (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y) turned aside six shots.  Bridgewater held a 27-18 shot advantage as well as a 10-8 edge in penalty corners.

            Plymouth ends the season with an overall mark of 13-7, while Bridgewater finishes at 18-4. The 18 wins is the most in BSU field hockey history. 

(Courtesy of Bridgewater State Sports Information) 

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