‘Cats capture first NEC win

Cassie Comeau

Coming off a three-game losing streak, the Quinnipiac field hockey team turned its season around Friday afternoon by capturing its first Northeast Conference win, defeating Robert Morris 2-1 in overtime at Quinnipiac Field Hockey and Lacrosse Turf Complex.Three minutes into the first overtime, tied at 1, Quinnipiac received a penalty corner. Ashley Gradwell sent the ball into the melee. Megan McCreedy served as stick-stop and Kimberly Cunniff took the shot, scoring the winning goal.

“I’m going to say it makes me feel relief,” Quinnipiac head coach Becca Main Kohli said. “I would most likely see this team at the NEC championships if we get there; hopefully we will get there. [Robert Morris is] a very good team. Very good relief to get a big win under our belt.”

Scoring started early in the game when McCreedy scored unassisted off a penalty corner 8:55 into the first half.

Robert Morris answered nearly 13 minutes later when Chantele Crow took the penalty corner, sending the ball to Michelle Lewthwaite. Jamie Hartley then sent the ball past Bobcat goaltender Nicole Lewis, tying the game at 1.

“[Robert Morris has] some really good stick skills,” Kohli said. “I hadn’t seen that in a while, and I think across the board, they handled the ball very well. We had to be very smart defensively, balance, we had to work together, so that was the one thing I think was most difficult for us today.”

Throughout the second half, both teams fought for control of the game. Quinnipiac had 15 total shots, while Robert Morris had 13. Neither could capitalize on their chances until overtime when Cunniff scored the winning goal.

“We stayed unified, stayed as a unit, and we passed,” Kohli said. “Our goals today were taking quick free hits, pass the ball, and communicate. We did all three of those things and that’s why we won.”

The Bobcats return to play Sunday at noon to face Saint Francis (Pa.) at home for Quinnipiac’s Play for the Cure game.