Rock field hockey wins against Mercyhurst, keeps playoff hopes alive

Published by , Author: Ben Matos - Rocket Contributor, Date: October 21, 2016
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Slippery Rock field hockey defeated Mercyhurst in a Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) game, 3-1. Slippery Rock recorded goals from junior Kailee Krupski, freshman Savanna Robinson and senior Megan McKay. Krupski and McKay each added an assist while freshman Hannah Shirk passed out an assist as well.

Defensively, junior Kayla Mack recorded a defensive save on the day while junior goalkeeper Nicole Bream recorded 10 saves on 11 shots faced.

Before the game, Slippery Rock had to participate in PSAC’s new sportsmanship initiative. The Rock shook hands with the Mercyhurst players before and after the game.

“It is a nice way to highlight sportsmanship and its importance,” said head coach Julie Swiney.

The win puts The Rock’s record at 6-9 overall and 3-4 in the PSAC. It is now the seventh straight season in which SRU has registered six more wins. Slippery Rock is now tied for seventh with Indiana (Pa.) in the PSAC standings.

With the win SRU is now just a game back of sixth place in PSAC standings with only three games remaining; the top six teams in the league standings at the end of the regular season qualifies for the league tournament. SRU’s next game against IUP on Sunday could prove to have major playoff implications.

Swiney believes that the team is focused and ready for the last few games.

“The team continues to work hard, stay focused and support each other,” said Swiney.

The Rock scored first at 17:59 when Krupski deflected a shot from Shirk into the goal. The goal was Krupski’s first of the season while it was Shirk’s first assist of her career. SRU took its 1-0 lead into the break.

Mercyhurst tied the in the 42nd minute when Jessica Brandon dribbled into the SRU zone and fired a shot into the cage.

The Rock answered back ten minutes later when McKay let a shot go that was deflected into the goal by Robinson to push The Rock’s advantage to 2-1. It was Robinson’s second goal of 2016 and the first game-winning goal of her career. It was also McKay’s fourth assist of the year which, broke a tie with Allie Hartman (2007-10) for first all-time in career assists (15).

With just under five minutes remaining in regulation, McKay would score a goal of her own when a pass off a penalty corner from Krupski found the back of the cage and extended The Rock lead, 3-1. It was McKay’s 10th on the season and Krupski’s sixth assist of the year

Despite SRU trailing MU in penalty corners (7-6) and shots goal (12-5), The Rock still pulled out the victory.

Slippery Rock will try and keep its playoff hopes alive at Indiana (Pa.) 1 p.m. Sunday.

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