There were three moments in this game I thought we had the win. The Leopards put on a terrific offensive and defensive display in the first half. Lafayette took 5 shots to Ohio State’s 1 in the first two periods and connected for two goals. The first goal was belonged to Sawers with a Molly McAndrew assist, in a cross in front of the cage, a mere 23 seconds into the second period. The second goal came from Felicitas Hannes with 6 minutes left in the half. The Leopards struck multiple times with sudden bursts of offense, putting Ohio State on their heels at the half, down 2-0.
At the time, I thought…we got this!! But to State’s credit they came out determined, scoring their first of two goals in the second period at 31:16. We still have the lead, said I. But at 43:09 Megan McKenna, off a give and go planted the tying goal in the lower right. There was a reason a 2-0 score was called the most dangerous score in field hockey. Tied it was, to remain for the remainder of the quarter.
It was four minutes into the fourth quarter and Molly McAndrew hit a redirect from Felicitas Hannes making it 3-2 Lafayette’s favor….we got this I said to myself… for the second time. Just hold on for 11 minutes!! But with six minutes left in the game a foul was committed, and a yellow card was pulled out by the official. That meant for the last six minutes the Leopards were to be one player short for five minutes of those minutes. Then the Buckeyes were to increase their firepower, by pulling the goaltender, making their offensive set a 2 player advantage. Emma Goldean was to hit on a goal with less than four minutes left in the game and three minutes on the penalty. Three minutes later the buzzer sounded and it was overtime ahead.
The ball was to go back and fourth across the midline during most of the 10 minute overtime, with Ohio State getting several corners in the process. However with a number of breakaways, Lafayette seemed to ready to strike a final blow. Molly McAndrews seems to score it after going one on one with goaltender…goal. we got this!!!…..maybe not. Ohio State called for a video review and the goal is reversed, and the two teams play on into a second overtime. This time at 4:53 into the second overtime, Megan McKenna from Ohio State hits for the winning goal!!
It’s hard to say Lafayette deserved the win. But they played hard in an epoch effort, against a ranked opponent. The Leopards are a good team with good coaching, and if they are as smart as I think they are, this team could go far. There are 15 games left. They should not forget this game, but learn from it, and make themselves better. I believe in them, and would bet a lot of money they will be the better for it.
Now onto their second Big Ten opponent on Sunday, Indiana.