LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The nationally-ranked Saint Anselm College field hockey team opened its 2018 campaign with a tough 2-1 overtime loss to the Knights from Bellarmine University on Friday.
Saint Anselm, ranked seventh in NCAA Division II by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association, falls to 0-1 on the season while Bellarmine moves to 1-0 on the year. Friday's result is only the Hawks fourth regulation loss since the start of the 2016 season.
The Hawks jumped out to an early 1-0 lead following the first collegiate goal by freshman Carly LaCasse (Sagamore Beach, Mass.). The tally came near the end of the first half following a scramble in front of Bellarmine netminder Heather Gregory, who had turned aside three Saint Anselm shots to that point.
The Knights would tie the game at one shortly after halftime as Jillian Fazio put one home into the upper-left corner of the net. Despite being outshot 12-3 through the game's 70 minutes of regulation time, Bellarmine cashed in with the overtime game-winner off the stick of Merit Harris.
Saint Anselm had 14 of the game's 18 penalty corners, but Harris' winning strike came off of her team's first and only corner of overtime. In total, Saint Anselm finished with a 12-5 advantage in shots but Bellarmine was able to sneak past its nationally-ranked opponent.
Hawks goalkeeper Julia Hand (Reading, Mass.) made one save, drawing the loss, while Gregory made five saves on six shots to pick up the win for the Knights.
Saint Anselm will face-off against unranked Lindenwood (Mo.) in a 12 p.m. neutral-site contest at Bellarmine on Saturday.