BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – The visiting Plymouth State University field hockey team edged Bridgewater State University, 3-2, in a Little East Conference matchup on Saturday at Swenson Field.
The Panthers improve to 7-7 on the season and 5-5 in the Little East, while the host Bears fall to 2-11 overall and 2-7 in conference play.
Both keepers made key stops on one-on-one scoring opportunities in the opening minutes of the contest to keep the game knotted at 0-0 early.
After a scoreless first quarter, sophomore forward Jess Mezquita (Atkinson, N.H.) opened the scoring for the Panthers just over three minutes into the second period. Off a restart, sophomore midfielder Leah Mayes (Lebanon, N.H.) sent a long pass into the circle. Mezquita collected the loose ball and slipped a backhander into the center of the net for her team-leading seventh goal of the season.
Just 71 seconds later, BSU senior forward Jacquelyn Legendre (Westport, Mass.) stick-handled in from the 30, beat a defender and fired a shot into the top-left corner of the cage to knot the score at 1-1.
After there were no penalty corners called over the first 22 minutes of the contest, Plymouth State was awarded three in a span of 39 seconds and the Panthers capitalized on the third one. Junior defender Kate McPherson (Conway, N.H.) found the back of the net from ten yards out with Mayes recording her second assist of the day.
Sophomore forward Victoria Camara (Westport, Mass.) answered for the Bears with 3:42 left to play in the first half as she scored off the rebound of a Olivia Ahlman (Halifax, Mass.) shot. For Camara, the goal marked her first of the 2019 season.
Following a scoreless third quarter, junior forward Haley Wakefield (Norway, Maine) netted the game-winner for the Panthers 2:26 into the final period. Sophomore midfielder Natalie Perry (Conway, Mass.) fired the ball in on a goal from 28 yards out that went off the BSU netminder. Mezquita collected the loose ball and stick-handled to the left. Wakefield then backhanded a shot into the left side of the cage to break the tie.
The Panthers held a 13-10 shot advantage for the game and held a decided 11-2 edge in penalty corner attempts.
Junior goalkeeper Jess Distler (Brookfield, N.H.) made six saves to record her fifth win between the pipes for Plymouth State. BSU senior netminder Jillian Delaney (Foxborough, Mass.) turned aside four shots in the setback for the Bears.
The Bears entertain Little East rival UMass Dartmouth on Wednesday afternoon at 3:30, while the Panthers host a conference game with Worcester State University next Saturday at noon.