Bryn Mawr, Pa. – After a couple of days full of exciting finishes in every sport Bryn Mawr competed in, it was only fitting that the Owls field hockey team would close out the weekend with a shootout victory over Wells College late Sunday afternoon. In a back-and-forth affair that saw both teams get plenty of chances, it was the Yellow and Black that ultimately came out on top after more than 100 minutes of play.
Bryn Mawr (2-1) carried much of the play early on, with the Owls spending most of the time possessing the ball in the offensive end. Holly Senebandith got a good look at the cage just three minutes in, but her shot fizzled just wide. A few minutes later, Holly Constants took a shot of her own, but Wells' Sydney Line made a solid stop to keep things scoreless. Wells (0-7) finally got settled down enough to break out of their own end, and a shot by Kate Wells at the 16 minute mark forced Bryn Mawr goalkeeper Alex Weinfeld to make a great save of her own.
The Owls regained possession and ended up earning a penalty corner a few minutes later. Katie Alpert stepped to the side of the cage to take the corner, and she fired a low ball up to the top of the circle for a waiting Mikah Farbo. The senior midfielder let loose with a cannon of a shot that snaked its way through a mass of bodies in front of the goal and slammed into the cage to give Bryn Mawr a 1-0 lead. The Owls would double up on that just over two minutes later, this time off the stick of Ashley Arbuckle. Constants brought the ball downfield after an attack by the Express and fed a pass inside the circle to Senebandith. She then quickly sent the ball to Arbuckle, who was waiting just on the right of the cage. Arbuckle snuck a shot past Line and into the goal to make it a 2-0 game in favor of the hosts.
Any other team that came into today's game on an 0-6 record may have folded after seeing goals against come in rapid succession like that, but the Express managed to keep their wits about them. Just five minutes after going down 0-2, the visitors responded by winning a penalty corner of their own. Shianne Stokes managed to get two shots off as a result of that play, both of which were saved by Weinfeld. However, the second rebound fell to the stick of Cat Taylor, who sent the ball right back into the cage before Weinfeld could react, cutting the deficit to 2-1. The Owls answered right back, however, with Arbuckle netting her second goal of the contest. After Alpert saw a shot saved by Line, Arbuckle collected the loose ball rebound and shot from the right side. The ball deflected into the back of the cage off a defender, making it a 3-1 game in favor of the Owls.
The Express were not fazed; just over six minutes into the second half, they once again trimmed their deficit to a single goal, as Kate Wells nailed a ball into the cage to make it a 3-2 game. Finally, with time winding down, the Express somehow found a way to sneak home the game-tying goal off the stick of Nicole Sales. Her second goal of the season made it a brand new game, and with the teams tied at 3-3, the contest headed into overtime.
Wells had the first good look at the game-winning goal just 45 seconds into the first extra frame when they earned a penalty corner opportunity. However, the resulting shot went just wide of the cage, giving Bryn Mawr new life. The Owls later earned several penalty corners of their own in the frame, but their shots were ultimately saved or blocked, and the first OT ended without a winner. The second overtime saw more of the same, as both sides attacked and counterattacked their way up and down the field, but neither side was able to find the back of the cage, sending the game into a shootout. Wells had a chance to get on top by going first in the shootout, but Alex Weinfeld saved the Marina Fargnoli's attempts, giving Bryn Mawr the advantage. Holly Constants capitalized on that by finding the back of the cage on her shot, putting the Owls ahead. From there, Wells was left trying to match everything the Owls did. Weinfeld came up big again on the Express' second attempt, but Line matched that effort with a save of her own. After a made attempt by Shianne Stokes, Farbo stepped up and blasted a shot into the cage to put Bryn Mawr ahead 2-1 in the shootout. Wells finally tied it back up at 2-2 after Nicole Sales made her attempt and Arbuckle saw her effort go wide of the frame. On the crucial fifth shot of the shootout, Weinfeld made one more great save, allowing Ashlee Williams to step up and score the decisive game-winning goal to give Bryn Mawr the 4-3 victory.
With the win, the Owls move to 2-1 on the season. They team won't get much of a breather after today's marathon contest, as they face Franklin and Marshall in their first conference game of the season on Wednesday afternoon. The game is set to take place at 4:30 PM on Applebee Field, and you can follow all the action via live video and live stats coverage on the Bryn Mawr Athletics site here!