by Alan Babbitt
Carly Pieri scored with 18 seconds remaining in overtime to lift the Hope College women's lacrosse team to a 12-11 victory against Frostburg State (Maryland) on Friday in Hilton Head, S.C.
The sophomore from Alto, Michigan (Caledonia HS) capitalized after a Frostburg State yellow card foul gave her a free-position shot.
The Flying Dutch improved to 4-2 on the season.
"There's no doubt that both teams came prepared to give their best effort today and the game's momentum could have gone either way," head coach Kim Vincent said. "It was a great game because we were so evenly matched. For us, it came down to believing in ourselves, maintaining our poise under pressure, ball handling and patience.
"We believe this win was truly the result of the trust we have in each other. Every one of our players brought so much energy to the game. It was truly a group effort and one that started on the first day of this season's training."
Hope jumped out to a 5-0 lead by scoring five times in the first 11 ½ minutes. Frostburg State (1-6) answered with the next five goals to make the score 5-5 at halftime.
Neither team pulled ahead by more than two goals during the second half.
The Flying Dutch took an 11-10 lead with 55 seconds remaining in regulation when sophomore Rachel Elder of Grand Rapids, Michigan (East Grand Rapids) scored. Frostburg evened the score 30 seconds later on Stephanie King's sixth goal of the match.
The two teams played nearly all of the first three-minute overtime when Pieri scored and gave the Flying Dutch their second win in three spring-break matches.
"Playing tough teams like Frostburg on spring break teams really tests our ability to be competitive in new situations and challenges us to higher levels," Vincent said. "We have to bring our best to conference play and feel that this trip has shown us what we are capable of."
Sophomore Jane Ragains of Western Springs, Illinois (Lyons Township) finished with a career-high five goals. She also registered one assist.
Elder equaled her season-high with four goals. Pieri scored twice.
Hope's next match is Thursday, March 28 at home against Aquinas College.