Lucye Rafferty/The Hoya Senior defender Lauren Galbally clears the ball out of the Hoyas’ defensive zone. Galbally had two shots on goal and one assist in Georgetown’s overtime loss.

At last, a solid second half for Georgetown field hockey. A freshman goaltender making key saves in only her second career start. Two opportunistic goals scored off deflected shots. It seemed as though the bounces were finally going their way, and on Saturday, the team would be able to pull out its first victory in three weeks since a season-opening win against Longwood.

Unfortunately, the University of Maine proved to have too much offensive firepower for the Hoyas to handle, and a 3-2 overtime loss dropped their record to 1-6 and extended their losing streak to six consecutive games. With the victory, the Black Bears stand at 5-1.

“We stuck to our game plan. We knew that Maine was an offensive team and was going to get corners, so we just had to minimize the opportunities we gave to them,” head coach Laurie Carroll said.

Senior defender and co-captain Lauren Galbally agreed. “We took a step forward today,” she said, noting that although the Hoyas found themselves on the losing end once again, it was not due to uninspired play.

The scoring opened quickly, when Maine took advantage of a penalty corner and senior forward Karly Bundy converted a pass from senior back Rebecca Ouellet just 3:27 into the game.

Just under two minutes later, Georgetown responded, garnering two consecutive corners before senior Beth Gagnon deflected a shot from Galbally and evened the score.

For the duration of the first half, both teams remained deadlocked at 1-1. Although Maine threatened on several corners, Georgetown’s experienced back line was able to keep the Black Bears at bay, blocking several shots and forcing several others wide. At the break, the teams were even in shots, 4-4, and Maine held a 6-5 advantage in corners.

“We just tried to keep chipping away, competing for longer and longer. We responded well to their first goal,” Carroll said afterwards, but emphasized her team’s need to tighten up a bit more on defense.

Despite some slight fatigue in the hot, sunny conditions on Kehoe Field, both teams jumped out at the start of the second half and won several corners in the first five minutes. Whether due to the physical play of the game – including a number of minor collisions – or to the weather conditions, the Hoyas found themselves lagging slightly for a few minutes, before picking up the intensity level and putting a few shots on goal.

Nonetheless, Maine’s senior goalkeeper Jaye Lance responded with several timely saves before her team went on top at 50:54. Freshman forward Kirsten Costa centered a pass to sophomore forward Kasey Spencer, whose goal regained the lead for her side.

Departing from their recent spate of second-half letdowns, the Hoyas proved resilient enough to knot the score at 2-2 less than a minute later, when senior co-captain midfielder Leeanne Rizzo tipped junior back Caroline Cole’s shot from the outside. It was Rizzo’s second goal this season, and her first since the season opener.

After the goal, Maine coach Terri Kix protested vehemently, arguing that the shot had never been touched on the way to the net and should not have counted. Her insistence proved a bit too much for the referees, who responded with a red card and ejected Kix for the duration of the match.

The two teams moved quickly past the distraction, but neither was able to prevail in regulation and the game proceeded to overtime. In the extra frame “we had to just keep competing,” Carroll said. “I would have liked for us to keep the ball in the offensive one-third of the field more than we did, but our goaltender made some great saves today. We just let them in the door too many times.”

In particular, Carroll was discouraged by her team’s 9-0 overtime deficit in shots, especially after the Hoyas had held a 10-7 advantage in the second half. Freshman goalie Caitlyn Faller came up big with six saves, including several point-blank stops, but with 1:13 remaining in overtime, Bundy’s second goal proved the difference-maker and sent Georgetown to the loss column once again.

Rizzo said afterwards, “We gave a solid effort today.” But she expected to bring the same attitude against American. “We’ve beaten American each of the last three years, so we’re going to try to keep that streak going.”

Carroll concurred. “We need to carry this game over to Wednesday,” she said. “Maine’s a great team. They’re strong, fast and we knew it was going to be a fight. We gave them numbers in overtime. [In the future,] we need to minimize the opportunities we’re giving the other team. Other than that, we did well.”

By making some slight improvements on an otherwise impressive performance, the Hoyas look to continue their cross-town winning streak and end their current losing streak when they host the Eagles at Kehoe Field on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m.

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