With 3 Atlantic 10 conference games remaining, VCU Field Hockey found themselves battling for one of the 4 playoff seeds. Saint Francis (PA) entered Cary St. Field tied with VCU in 4th place. Friday night was a high scoring spectacle with both offenses lighting up the scoreboard.
The first period displayed a total of 18 shots between SFU and VCU. Lauren Kaup took the opening shot that was saved by SFU. Penalty corner and shot attempts went back and forth but the score remained 0-0.
That result changed in the 23’ minute thanks to Natalie Bohmke. Bohmke made way towards SFU’s goal and was close enough to fire a shot near the far post that rolled in. She scored her third goal of the year and put VCU up 1-0.
Offensively the Rams toned down a little bit as Saint Francis went in search of an equalizer. The Red Flash found that in the 27’ minute as Brianna Govia knocked the equalizer in to draw level at 1-1.
Physical play amped up later in the period along with VCU’s offense getting a second wind. Bohmke nearly found a second goal that was blocked and Emily McNamara had a crack at goal that rolled wide before half-time. At half-time, VCU and SFU remained tied at 1-1.
Lighting Up The Turf & Scoreboard
In the second period, both teams put on their Friday best gameplay wise. McNamara continued leading the VCU offense with shot attempts. The Rams were digging themselves in a hole with unnecessary fouls on promising scoring chances.
VCU took advantage of an opportunity in the 43’ minute. McNamara launched a pass across the turf towards Jamee Albright near goal. Albright got her stick on the ball before the SFU goalie to pop it in the air and give it friendly tap into the open net. A beautiful play of teamwork by Allbright and McNamara put VCU back out in front 2-1.
Nearly 4 minutes later, Saint Francis answered back with another equalizer in the 47’ to tie the game again at 2-2. Saint Francis only needed 2 minutes after tying the game to take the lead in the 49’ minute. Govia notched her 2nd goal of the game after dribbling towards goal and finishing near post.
SFU held a 3-2 advantage and in nearly a blink of the eye, VCU was right back in it with an equalizer of their own. Maite Sturm moved the ball upfield towards goal; Strum sent a through ball towards McNamara near the post. McNamara smashed it into the back of the net for her 14th goal of the season as fans and teammates roared on the sidelines in celebration.
Big Goals Near Closing Time
Intensity remained at high levels as the game continued. McNamara and Strum took shots that almost gave the Rams the lead but SFU’s defense denied the attempts. Red Flash did get into some penalty trouble with Brea Seabrook getting a green card and Brianna Govia seeing a yellow card.
The Rams were awarded a penalty corner in the 59’ minute. Spencer Tossone sent the ball into the penalty area where McNamara took a strike that was saved. McNamara was able to collect the rebound and tap the second chance into the net to give VCU a 4-3 lead.
With time running out for the Red Flash, SFU was able to hit paydirt. Brea Seabrook launched a shot from the top of the arc that hit the top corner of the net with nearly 4 minutes left on the clock.
A 6 goal affair in period 2 resulted in a 4-4 tie that needed extra time to decide a result. In overtime, VCU’s offense once again took control of possession and was not letting SFU anywhere near the ball.
VCU’s chance arrived in the 80’ off of a penalty corner. Tossone once again found McNamara at the arc as the junior Forward scored her hat-trick goal. McNamara’s 16th goal of the season was a golden one as VCU emerged victorious 5-4 over Saint Francis (PA) in overtime.
VCU Field Hockey improved to 4-2 in Atlantic 10 Play. With the victory, VCU is in sole possession of 4th place in the A-10. The Rams improve to 11-5 overall for the season. The Rams defend Cary Street Field on Sunday, October 22nd against La Salle in an A-10 match at 1 PM.