LANCASTER, Pa. – The third time was the charm for Lauren Ehrhardt. The Franklin & Marshall junior delivered the No. 7 Diplomats (6-1) an 11-10 sudden victory over top-ranked Salisbury on a free position shot. It was the third time in extra-time that she had put the ball in the cage, but only the first that actually counted.
In the first overtime, Ehrhardt found twine on an FPS only to see it canceled out by an offensive blocking call. Early in the sudden victory period, Ehrhardt once again broke the plane, but the whistle was blown prior, sending her to the top left side of the eight-meter fan. This time, Ehrhardt's shot counted, putting the first blemish on the defending national champions' record this season.
The victory is in keeping with the theme of one of Division III's best rivalries. The Sea Gulls (9-1) handed F&M their first loss of the season in each of the years following F&M's NCAA titles. The 11-10 overtime final also matched the 2009 NCAA title game score.
Ehrhardt's game-winner was made possible by the last of Kelsey Hoffman's six saves on the night. The freshman keeper fended off a point blank shot from Allie Wheatley that was pegged for the lower-left side of the net. Hoffman made the stop and Maggie Mae Shields collected the carom and carried the decisive clear.
While it ended in F&M's favor, it was all Salisbury at the opening draw. Wheatley opened the scoring early with an FPS before Aileen McCausland finished a quick stick feed from Logan Bilderback. Wheatley finished her night with four goals. Like Wheatley, McCausland had the game in her stick, hitting the post with 10 seconds left in the first overtime. She ended the night with a pair.
Katie Delaney finally got F&M on the board with a free position shot into the bottom right corner, but Trish Digirlomo factored in on back-to-back goals 2:10 apart to make it 4-1. She set up the first of Alyssa Fowler's pair with a feed from behind for the first, then sprung out from behind the left side of the cage where she rolled home the first of her two in the game.
As she did throughout the night, Cat Serpe turned the momentum in the half. She ran half the field weaving through a sea of defenders inside of the fan and then threw a perfect pass to Lauren Selawski on the left post while getting wiped out in the middle. Selawski buried the shot. The sophomore had a team-high three goals before the game was over. Serpe ended up with two goals and three assists.
Katie Delaney and Erin Dunne then scored consecutive FPS goals to knot it at 4-4.
Neither team gained more than a two-goal advantage the rest of the way. Salisbury owned the first two-goal lead. Katie Bollhorst threaded a needle with a pass to a well-marked McCausland to end F&M's run. Fowler extended the lead to 6-4, dropping a ball in error, but scooping it back up and past Hoffman in the top-left corner.
Serpe rallied F&M once again. With 59 seconds in the first half, she threw the feed for Ehrhardt's first goal, and then 52 seconds later, she made two moves to win a one-on-one and knotted the game 6-6 going into the break.
Serpe's best feed of the night gave F&M its first lead of the game. The junior ran right along the top of the fan drawing a pair of defenders, she turned and threw a pass against the grain to Dunne for the easy finish. Selawski and Wheatley then traded pairs of goals making it a 9-8 game in favor of F&M, before Ehrhardt fed Serpe for an easy goal. Salisbury keeper Julie Ann Caulfield was well out of the net when a foul ended a Salisbury clear. Ehrhardt threw a pass to the middle where Serpe fed the open goal.
Caulfied turned away nine shots in the loss, including a pair in overtime, stoning Ehrhardt and Ali Kelly.
She got to overtime because DiGirilomo had bounced home and FPS shot with 10:24 to play. The Gulls scored again 19 seconds later on a free position attempt. Bollhorst had the shot from the top left edge of the fan, but passed it down low to Wheatley who was stationed on the left post at the restart.
Wheatley made it the 10-10 score that stood up until Ehrhardt ended it.
The game was as chippy as would be expected with two familiar teams. Salisbury was whistled for 35 fouls to F&M's 21. Lauren Feusahrens and Kristen Chandler each drew two yellow cards for the Gulls, while F&M had to play without Serpe from the time it became a 10-9 game as she took her second yellow.
F&M owned a 15-10 advantage on the draw circle and an 18-17 edge in ground balls. The Diplomats out-shot their guests30-23.
F&M improved to 35-1 at home under Lauren Paul and 62-2 at home since the start of the 2005 season. The Diplomats return to action tomorrow against Washington College. F&M will face the second undefeated team from Maryland's Eastern Shore in as many days.
#1 Salisbury (9-1) vs. #7 Franklin & Marshall (6-1)
SCORE BY PERIOD 1 2 OT O2 Tot
Salisbury........... 6 4 0 0 - 10
Franklin & Marshall. 6 4 0 1 - 11
Salisbury SCORING: GOALS: Allie Wheatley 4; Trish DiGirolomo 2; Alyssa Fowler 2; Aileen McCausland 2.
ASSISTS: Katie Bollhorst 2; Logan Bilderback 1; Trish DiGirolomo 1.
Franklin & Marshall SCORING: GOALS: Lauren Selawski 3; Cat Serpe 2; Lauren Ehrhardt 2; Erin Dunne 2; Katie Delaney 2.
GOALIES - SAL: Julie Ann Caulfield 9-1 (67:46 minutes, 20 shots-9 saves, 11 GA); F&M: Kelsey Hoffman 6-1 (67:46, 16-6, 10).
ASSISTS: Cat Serpe 3; Lauren Ehrhardt 1.
SHOTS - Salisbury 23; Franklin & Marshall 30.
SHOTS ON GOAL - Salisbury 16; Franklin & Marshall 20.
TURNOVERS - Salisbury 10; Franklin & Marshall 12.
CLEARS - Salisbury 10-13; Franklin & Marshall 10-15.
Salisbury GROUND BALLS: Katie Bollhorst 3; Alyssa Fowler 2; Alyssa Hardesty 2; Aileen McCausland 2; Carrie Bray 1; Julie Ann Caulfield 1; Kristen Chandler 1; Liz Filgueras 1; Cat Gardner 1; Morgan Illian 1; Meagan Osipowich 1; Allie Wheatley 1.
Salisbury TURNOVERS CAUSED: Carrie Bray 2; Meagan Osipowich 2; Allie Wheatley 2; Katie Bollhorst 1; Aileen McCausland 1.
Franklin & Marshall TURNOVERS CAUSED: Maggie Mae Shields 2; Anne Brockmyer 1; Katie Delaney 1; Mary McNutt 1; Libby Nichols 1.
Start time: 6:00 pm Finish time: 8:28 pm Length of game: 2hr 28 m
Officials: Sue Frazier; Loretta Pawlowski; Patti Morris. Scorer: F&M Sports Info.
A-742 T-2hr 28 m