Willert Lifts F&M Past Elizabethtown in OT

Willert Lifts F&M Past Elizabethtown in OT

LANCASTER, Pa. –  Senior Becky Willert recorded a hat trick to lead the Franklin & Marshall field hockey team to a 3-2 overtime triumph over visiting Elizabethtown on Friday afternoon at Tylus Field in the season opener for both squads. The Diplomats begin the year at 1-0 with the win, while the Blue Jays open the season at 0-1.

Despite the contest being the first of the year for both teams, neither side showed any rust as two of the game's five goals were recorded in the opening 1:30.

The Diplomats jumped out of the gates quickly as they earned a corner less than a minute into the contest. Junior Steph McDonald collected the corner at the top of the arc and fed Willert, who slid a shot past Blue Jay junior goalkeeper Lindy Hamp and F&M led 1-0 just 53 seconds into the game.

The F&M lead wouldn't last for long as Elizabethtown put the pressure on the Diplomat defense immediately following Hennigan's tally. Junior Nadine Yunginger found the back of the cage off a feed from senior Caitlin Grimes to knot the score at 1-1.

Willert, the Diplomats leading goal-scorer in 2010, notched another goal, unassisted, in the 17th minute to help F&M re-take the advantage.

The Diplomats would remain in the lead until Elizabethtown junior Erin Meanix stuck paydirt just over 13 minutes into the second stanza. Meanix took a pass from Grimes to the left of the goal, about 10 yards out, and fired a bullet to the far post to even the count at 2-2.

After a scoreless final 20 minutes of regulation, the contest headed to the extra session, where Willert would come through in the clutch for F&M.

Just over three minutes into overtime, junior Chelsey Talhelm sparked the Diplomat offense as she dribbled down the right side of the pitch and fed Willert, who was waiting in front of the cage and fired a hard, low shot to the left side.

The Diplomats held a distinct advantage in both shots (14-6) and corners (10-2). Sophomore Avery Koep totaled two saves and picks up the win at goalkeeper for F&M, while Hamp tallied seven saves on the day in the loss.

F&M returns to action on Wednesday, September 7 in non-conference action at Alvernia at 7:00 pm.

Elizabethtown (0-1) vs. Franklin & Marshall (1-0)
Goals by period       1  2 OT  Tot
 Elizabethtown          1  1  0 -  2
 Franklin & Marshall   2  0  1 -  3
  1.   0:53 F&M Maura Hennigan (1) (Steph McDonald)
  2.   1:30 ETWN-F Nadine Yunginger (1) (Caitlin Grimes)
  3.  16:54 F&M Becky Willert (1) (unassisted)
  4.  48:27 ETWN-F Erin Meanix (1) (Caitlin Grimes) - far post shot from 10 yards out on left side
  5.  73:26 F&M Becky Willert (2) (Chelsey Talhelm) - cross from right side outside arc low hard shot to left side

 Shots: Elizabethtown 6, Franklin & Marshall 14
 Saves: Elizabethtown 7 (Lindy Hamp 7), Franklin & Marshall 3 (Avery Koep 2; TEAM 1)