Despite outshooting Pacific by almost 30 shots, it took 86 minutes for No. 8 Boston College field hockey to close up a trip to Virginia with a win.
Eagles senior Brooke Matherson scored three minutes into the second overtime period, putting away a second-chance attempt to secure a 5-4 double overtime win. Matherson’s third goal ended a back-and-forth neutral site game against the Tigers (4-6) that saw five lead changes and plenty of drama.
The Eagles (7-3), which have alternated wins and losses since starting the year 4-0, took an early lead. Just four minutes in, Lucy Lytle tallied her third goal of the season, coming via an assist from Jaime Natale. Natale, a freshman from Pennsylvania, leads the team with nine points through 10 games.
BC’s defense, which held a potent Virginia attack to three goals on Friday—less than half of the Cavaliers’ average scoring output—broke down just four minutes later. The one-goal lead was quickly flipped, as Pacific’s Gabriella Fondario and Krieke van Wyk scored back-to-back, just 19 seconds apart.
Fondario scored off of a pass from Steffen Axle, who slotted it in from the outside circle. Van Wyk followed off of a quick restart, scoring a second chance opportunity. Other than that, Pacific didn’t test BC goaltender Sarah Dwyer early as she recorded just three first half saves.
The Eagles rallied before halftime, pulling even at two apiece behind Carly Kauffman’s first goal of the season. They kept continuous pressure on the Tigers, firing off 11 shots in the opening half, Kauffman scored a second chance goal, capitalizing on the steady stream of shots on Pacific keeper Marlise Van Tonder.
From there the teams traded scores.
Pacific’s van Wyk scored her second goal just under four minutes into the second half, finishing off of a penalty corner and an assist from Ash Rutherford. The Eagles had an answer 11 minutes later as freshman Fusine Govaert put away her third goal of the season, following up on a rebound.
The draw didn’t last long, with the Tigers’ Alicia Muinos putting her team up 4-3 just over a minute later. Muinos scored her first of the season with a fast break down the right side, burying a hard shot. Pacific couldn’t hold off the Eagles down the stretch, however, as constant pressure on the net resulted in an equalizer.
Eight minutes after Muinos’ goal, the Eagles found the back of the net following a corner and the ensuing scrum. Ymke Rose Gote scored off of an assist from Frederique Haverhals, who had a goal called off earlier in the game.
Boston College had several chances to score, both in regulation and the opening overtime period. Van Tonder turned in an impressive effort, piling up 20 saves to just four for the Eagles Dwyer. Van Tonder faced three shots in the opening three minutes of the second overtime, eventually conceding the game-winner to Matherson.
The Tigers’ sub-.500 record entering Sunday holds up better on paper. Four of Pacific’s five losses came against ranked foes, including No. 1 Connecticut, No. 6 Syracuse and No. 12 Stanford. With the Eagles being the second of three ranked foes in a row, the Tigers showed their ability to hang tough with top talent. They’d just knocked off 18th-ranked William & Mary on Friday, and dropped a 1-0 nailbiter to Stanford the week prior.
BC faces a tough test on Friday. No. 2 Duke has just one loss on the season, coming to a common foe in Virginia. But there’s no doubt that the Eagles, still winless in ACC play despite their nonconference domination, will be hungry for a conference victory.
Featured Image by Lizzy Barrett / Heights Editor