Field Hockey Upends Williams, 3-2

Contact: Ben Badua


AMHERST, Mass. - The Amherst field hockey team erased a two-goal deficit with three second half scores, earning a 3-2 victory over archrival Williams on Gooding Field.

Krista Zsitvay ’14, Kerry Fusco ’15 and Madeline Tank ’15 accounted for the three Jeff goals, while Ellie Andersen ’15 and Katie McMahon ’13 each added an assist.

Annie VanWagenen ’16 buried a pair of markers just 1:25 apart in the first half to lead the Eph attack, while Caitlin Conlon ’15 and Lexie Brackenridge ’16 picked up a helper apiece.

Notching its fourth victory over Williams (5-4, 3-3 NESCAC) in five games, the Jeffs put the brakes on a three-game skid, improving to 6-3 (3-3 NESCAC) on the year.

Rachel Tannenbaum ’15 made two saves en route to her sixth win, while junior counterpart Ariana Spiliotes made 14 stops for the Ephs.

Winning its third corner in the game’s first 10 minutes, Andersen played it out to the top of the circle to Alex Philie ’14, who slotted a pass to Sarah Canning ’13 on the right side of the arc. Moving to the front of the cage, Tank redirected Canning’s shot wide right, narrowly missing a chance to put the home team ahead.

Generating another chance off a corner less than a minute later, Andersen tried to put away a rebound of a McMahon shot, but Spiliotes got her pad on the try to keep the Ephs level. Switching fields, Cary Hairfield ’15 put Williams’ first shot on net, challenging Tannenbaum with an attempt in the 17th minute from the left side, but the second-year keeper got just enough to push it wide.

Staying aggressive, Williams struck first with a goal at 22:35. Playing a ball toward the front of the Amherst net, Conlon found VanWagenen, who slipped behind Tannenbaum and slotted her fourth of the year into the right side of the net. Just 1:25 later, VanWagenen again broke through, this time putting away a Brackenridge pass to the top of the circle to give the Ephs a 2-0 cushion.

Hoping to get one back in the waning moments of the first, Nomi Conway ’13 put consecutive shots on target, but Spiliotes blocked down the first before Betsy Hart ’14 made a big defensive save at the right post to keep the Jeffs off the board.

Pushing forward to start the second, Amherst won a penalty corner in the opening minutes of play. Corralling a loose ball in front, Zsitvay lifted a shot into the top right corner of the Williams cage to suddenly cut the Jeff deficit in half.

Looking for the equalizer in the 50th minute, Zsitvay fired a shot from the top of the arc that found its way to Andersen on the left post. Sending a pass across the face of the goal, she found the stick of Fusco, who poked it into the open net.

Playing it into the circle in the 62nd minute, McMahon fed Tank, who calmly placed a low shot into the left corner to complete the Jeffs’ comeback bid.

Amherst, which finished with a decisive 26-5 shot advantage and a 23-2 edge in corners, returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 13 against Colby.