Rafferty, Luscher score for Panthers in LEC setback
CASTLETON, Vt. – Junior Kaihley Rafferty (Salem, Conn.) and freshman Mariah Luscher (Holderness, N.H.) each scored second half goals, but Plymouth State University fell to Castleton University, 5-2, in Little East Conference (LEC) field hockey action Tuesday night at Dave Wolk Stadium.
The Spartans built a 2-0 first half lead, then extended to 3-0 early in the second half. Rafferty's unassisted tally cut the deficit to 3-1, but Castleton answered ten minutes later. Luscher again cut the deficit to two goals, but the Spartans sealed the win with a final tally with just over two minutes to play.
Plymouth State falls to 2-5 overall (2-3 LEC), while Castleton improves to 6-2 and 4-0 in league games.
Plymouth State 2, Castleton 5
Plymouth State 2-5, 2-3 LEC
Castleton 6-2, 4-0 LEC
How it Happened:
* Sophomore Allison Lowell (Brandon, Vt.) gave the hosts a 1-0 lead in the 26th minute with her second goal of the season. On a set play off a penalty corner, Lowell fired a long shot from the top of the circle that found the back of the cage.
* Lowell helped the Spartans build a 2-0 lead three minutes later when her long pass led to a turnaround shot by senior Sarah Wells (Bellows Falls, Vt.).
* Wells notched her second of the game less than five minutes into the second half, scoring off her own rebound to push the lead to 3-0.
* Just 30 seconds later Rafferty got the Panthers on the board to cut the deficit to 3-1 with her third tally of the season.
* Wells struck again in the 51st minute to record her second career hat trick and push the Castleton lead to 4-1.
* Luscher picked up her second tally in as many games in the 56th minute. After Rafferty's initial shot was saved by the Spartans' goalkeeper, Luscher was there to redirect the rebound into the goal.
* Castleton sophomore Loretta Blakeney (Barnard, Vt.) capped the scoring with a goal in the 68 th minute. Classmate Gabriella Hunt (Granville, N.Y.) sent a pass from the right side to the far post and Blakeney was there to push it home.
Inside the Numbers:
* The Panthers held a 3-2 edge on penalty corners in the opening half, and both teams had seven chances in the second half.
* Castleton outshot the Panthers by a 16-10 margin for the game.
* Sophomore goalkeeper Jess Distler (Brookfield, N.H.) finished with seven saves for the Panthers, while her counterpart, junior Tashia Pashby-Rockwood (Williston, Vt.) made three stops for the Spartans.
* This was the first meeting between the two teams as LEC rivals. The Panthers had won each of the last four match-ups.
* Plymouth State heads to Eastern Connecticut for an LEC contest on Saturday (Sept. 29), starting at 12:00 p.m.
* Castleton is also on the road Saturday (Sept. 29), traveling to UMass Dartmouth for a 12:00 p.m. league game.
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