FH: Cougars Fall in Season Finale, 4-2, Against Smith

Photo: Katie Morrison
Photo: Katie Morrison

WORCESTER, Mass. – The Clark University field hockey team fell in the season finale on Saturday afternoon as Smith College used three second half goals to grab a 4-2 decision in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) action at Granger Field.

Prior to the game, the Cougars honored the contributions to the program given by their three seniors – Julia D'Antonio (Ramsey, N.J.), Kaitlyn DeBlois (Turner, Maine) and Mikayla Pantano (East Bridgewater, Mass.).

The Basics

Score: Pioneers 4, Cougars 2

Records: Clark University (8-10, 2-6 NEWMAC) | Smith College (4-14, 2-6 NEWMAC)

How it Happened

Clark University grabbed the lead in the 11th minute as Chase Collier (Lisbon, Maine) took a chance from outside of the circle before Pantano deflected the attempt into the top-left corner of the cage to give the host the first period lead.

Smith College responded just three minutes later as Vivian Nelson registered the game-tying goal, with the senior running down the end line before slipping in a shot up close in the final 1:16 of the stanza.

The lead swung again early in the second period of the game as first-year Kerry Lefebvre (Freeport, Maine) notched her team-leading 13th marker of the year. The forward battled for possession in front of the net, before putting the Cougars up 2-1 on a backhanded flick.

The 2-1 advantage held through the remainder of the first half, but Smith College stormed back with a pair of goals in the third period to permanently put the visitors ahead. Morgan Handwerger sparked the unanswered streak with an unassisted marker in the 41st minute to tie it up at two before Sammie Pavlov put the Pioneers ahead with her unassisted strike three minutes later.

Smith College received the final score of the game, picking up an insurance marker in the 57th minute of action when Handwerger tallied her second of the contest, wrapping around a defender and depositing her chance into a tight-opening in the cage for the 4-2 result.

Despite being saddled with the loss, netminder Grace Sawyer (Windham, Maine) was stellar in net for the Cougars as the sophomore matched her career-high with 17 saves.  

The Pioneers maintained a substantial advantage in short-corners throughout the game, finishing with a 23-6 advantage in the category with 12 of those coming in the third period. Smith also eclipsed the host, 27-14, on the shot chart.