On a frigid day in Amherst, Mass., the No. 13 Boston College Eagles (8-7, 0-5 ACC) looked to heat up their lackluster season against the UMass Minutemen (7-8, 3-3 A10). UMass put up a strong fight, but thanks to a torrent of penalty corners, the Eagles stormed past the Minutemen and captured a 3-2 victory.
The UMass stormed down the field the moment the first whistle blew and pressed the Eagles’ defense. In order to get ahead of the strong BC team, UMass knew it had to get an early goal. One minute into the game, Nicole Miller flicked a rebounded shot into the top right corner to put UMass up 1-0, dashing BC’s hopes for an easy non-conference win.
The BC team was tenacious and retaliated five minutes later. The Eagles challenged UMass’s goaltender, Sam Carlino, and took the ball deep inside the shooting circle. Eryn McCoy took a shot from right in front of the goal and found an opening on the left side to tie the game at one apiece.
Snow began to fall midway through the half, and with it came a flurry of shots on BC’s offensive end. BC earned six penalty corners in a row, but could not plow through the Minutemen’s defense and capitalize on any of the advantages.
Ten minutes later, the Eagles decided to heat things up again. With time expired but a corner penalty still in effect, BC had one final opportunity to break the tie before going into the half. All the Minutemen had to do was take the ball outside the shooting circle to end the half. The whistle blew and the ball was inserted into the circle. The Eagles swooped in toward the goal for one final effort. Frederique Haverals passed to an open McCoy, who effortlessly slid one past Carlino for her second goal of the game to make it 2-1.
Six minutes into the second half, BC was awarded another penalty corner. Haverals inserted the ball to AshLeigh Sebia, who found McCoy on the left side of the goal. McCoy slammed one into the right side of the cage to earn a hat trick and give the Eagles a 3-1 edge.
The Minutemen did not let BC ice them out. On a breakaway downfield, Nicole Kuerzi stormed into the shooting circle. She dribbled to the left side of the goal and shoveled one in past Leah Settipane, making it a 3-2 game.
With nine minutes left in the matchup, BC called a timeout in order to put a freeze on UMass’s offense pressure. The Eagles switched fronts and heated things up on the offensive end. Carlino, however, stayed strong and did not let a BC ball find the cage during a string of four corners.
UMass called a timeout with four minutes remaining to cool down BC’s offensive efforts. The Minutemen decided to take a risk by pulling Carlino to use an extra field player, but their efforts were fruitless. The Eagles’ defensive front stood strong until the end. With a slew of penalty corners and an all-star performance by McCoy, BC pulled off a strong 3-2 win.
Featured Image by Drew Hoo / Heights Editor