BOSTON -- Sam Geary (Norwood, Mass.) scored two goals and Margaux Shute (Norridgewock, Maine) made 13 saves, but the University of New Hampshire field hockey team was ousted from the 2007 America East Championship tournament with Friday afternoon's 5-2 semifinal loss to 13th-ranked and top-seeded Boston University at MIT's Jack Barry Field.
UNH, which earned the fourth seed with a 2-3 conference record, finishes the season at 9-12. BU, which defeated UNH 4-1 in this year's regular-season meeting at Jack Barry Field, improves to 16-5 and will play the winner of the second semifinal matchup (Albany vs. Vermont) in Sunday's title game.
BU immediately opened the game with pressure and took an early 1-0 lead at 2:40. Hayley Hamada drove in from the right wing and her centering pass was deflected in the cage by Hadley Adams.
Minutes later, Adams was denied on another redirection when Geary, standing near the right post, deflected the ball away from an open cage. Shute then turned aside a Terrier flurry that included two shots from Sarah Shute and another by Pam Spuehler.
The Terriers broke through again at 12:51 off a penalty corner. Holly Wiles' initial shot from the top of the circle was stopped by UNH's Shute, but Spuehler scored off the rebound in front.
UNH recorded its first shot of the game in the 13th minute when Shauna Sellenger (Londonderry, N.H.) fired a shot frrom the middle of the circle wide right of the cage. The Wildcats then generated a penalty corner, but the direct shot by Brooke Bercari (Bordentown, N.J.) was blocked aside by a charging BU defender. On the ensuing corner, UNH initially move the ball to the right, but then two quick passes moved the ball to the left wing. The misdirection did not produce a shot, however.
Spuehler struck again at 18:36 to give BU a 3-0 lead as she drove in from the top-right of the circle and blasted a shot off the goalie into the cage. UNH called time out at that point with the Terriers holding a three-goal lead and a 12-2 shot advantage.
New Hampshire generated sustained pressure from the 25th-30th minutes but could not generate shots off that pressure. BU then peppered Shute with four shots on goal in the last two minutes of the half.
BU continued to generate offense early in the second half and extended its advantage to 4-0 at 41:47 when Wiles scored on a direct shot off a penalty corner.
The home team was awarded a penalty stroke at 45:19, but Suus Dekker's shot to the upper-left corner of the cage was stopped by Shute.
The Terriers took a 5-0 lead at 55:37 when Hayly Ross redirected Dekker's hit into the cage off a penalty corner.
UNH scored a pair of penalty-corner goals in the last 12 minutes to close within 5-2. On the first corner, Sarah Craigue (Concord, N.H.) made the initial push to Sellenger, who swung the ball left to Geary for a shot across the circle that rolled inside the far post. That trio combined for nearly a carbon copy goal at 62:36, but this time Geary was part of the battery near the top of the circle as she drove a low shot inside the right post.
The Wildcats were awarded a corner in the closing seconds, but this time Geary's low blast bounded wide right of the cage.
Shute made 10 of her 13 saves in the first half for the Wildcats, while BU goalie Kim Kastuk was credited with her only save in the first half.
Geary's pair of tallies increased her season total to five goals to rank second on the team in that statistic. With two assists, Sellenger ended with a team-high nine for the season as well as a team-best 21 points.
The end of the 2007 season marked the end of a career for six UNH Wildcats -- Geary, Shute, Sellenger, Jen Mooney (Manchester, N.H.), Stefanie Simeone (Stratham, N.H.) and Nicole Lee (Trinidad & Tobago).