Panthers meet Keene State Saturday for championship
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Junior Nikki Garvey (Canaan, N.H.) notched a hat trick and added an assist Thursday evening to lead third-seeded Plymouth State University to a 5-0 victory over second-seeded Bridgewater State University in a Little East Conference Field Hockey Tournament semifinal game at Swenson Field.
The visiting Panthers (12-6) advance to the Little East Championship Game on Saturday against top-seeded Keene State College (19-3). Keene State knocked off fourth-seeded UMass Dartmouth Thursday in the other semifinal, 3-2. Bridgewater falls to 15-5 on the season as the Bears will await word on a possible ECAC Tournament selection.
Junior Emily Davis (Boscawen, N.H.) started a four-goal first-half scoring outburst for the Panthers in the 13th minute as she deflected in a shot by Garvey. Garvey then took control of the game, potting three unassisted goals over a 10-minute stretch to give PSU a 4-0 lead at the intermission. With her seven-point performance, Garvey increased her scoring output on the season to 24 goals and seven assists for 55 points. The 24 goals and 55 points each rank third in the Panthers' single-season record book.
Davis would add her second goal off the game and ninth of the season early in the second half off an assist from junior Kristen Morris (Stoughton, Mass.) to round out the scoring.
Plymouth State, which came into the contest allowing more than 2 ½ goals per game, limited Bridgewater to just seven shots and only four on frame. The Panthers finished with a decided 23-7 shot advantage as well as a 9-4 edge in penalty corners.
PSU senior goalkeeper Hilary Lemelin (Milan, N.H.) made four saves to post her first solo shutout of the season and the team's third. Bridgewater senior Kacie Sturgeon (Dartmouth, Mass.) turned aside six shots between the pipes, while classmate Olivia Galvin (Mashpee, Mass.) added a defensive save.
Saturday's title game is a rematch of the regular season game won by Keene State, 3-0, in Keene on Oct. 1.PSU is 9-1 since then.
(Courtesy of Bridgewater State Sports Information)
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