DURHAM, N.H.-- The College of the Holy Cross women's lacrosse team scored the last three goals of the game, including the only tally in overtime, to rally to defeat the University of New Hampshire, 12-11, Tuesday afternoon at Memorial Field.
The game marked the season opener for UNH while Holy Cross improved to 2-0.
Trailing 11-9 with 3:15 remaining in regulation, the Crusaders pulled within one goal on a strike by Nikki Bolduc at 58:33. HC won possession on the ensuing draw control and Melissa Conley scored with 1:01 remaining in regulation to pull the visitors even, 11-11. Holy Cross once again gained possession off the draw control and Calley Benoit's shot caromed off the crossbar in the waning seconds.
The Crusaders won the opening draw and Conley scored a free position goal at 61:40 to give HC a 12-11 lead. Holy Cross controlled possession for the last 1:20 of the first three-minute overtime session to protect its one-goal advantage.
The next overtime also began with the visitors winning possession on the draw control. The Wildcats were able to gain possession, however, and a close-range shot by Alexa Webster (Aurora, Colo.) ricocheted high into the air after hitting the crossbar. UNH forced a turnover with one minute to play in OT, but Benoit immediately intercepted a pass at midfield and Holy Cross maintained possession the rest of the way to secure the team's first win vs. UNH since 1996.
UNH goalkeeper Ashley Milley (Sudbury, Mass.) recorded 13 saves, including one in the six-minute overtime. HC counterpart Megan Orr stopped 16 shots, none in OT.
Webster, Katie Leland (Timonium, Md.) and Kristin Blanchette (Sudbury, Mass.) each recorded two goals and an assist for UNH, and Moira Talbot (Marblehead, Mass.) scored three goals. Sarah Von Bargen (East Seatuuket, N.Y.) and Ashley Durepo (Concord, N.H.) both had a goal and an assist in their collegiate debuts.
Patricia Sutton led the Crusaders' offense with three goals and an assist. Kristine Corkum and Conley both finished with two goals and an assist and Carolyn Smirti netted two goals.
Holy Cross built a 4-0 lead on goals by Amy Archambault (at 1:08), Sutton (7:43), Smirti (8:43) and Corkum (17:30). Blanchette put New Hampshire into the scoring column at 21:52 and set up Talbot's tally at 26:33 to pull the 'Cats within 4-2. Kelly Winslow struck on a free position at 27:26 to close the first half scoring.
Leland scored 49 seconds into the second half to once again trim the deficit to two goals, 5-3, but goals by Smirti and Corkum extended the Crusaders' lead to 7-3. Durepo and Talbot struck 38 seconds apart to lift UNH within 7-5 before Sutton's tally at 44:49.
Another pair of quick strikes - this time 33 seconds apart by Talbot and Blanchette - pulled the 'Cats within 8-7, then Leland and Von Bargen scored in an 18-second span in the 51st minute to give New Hampshire its first lead of the day, 9-8.
Sutton's third goal evened the score, 9-9, at 51:56. Webster then scored consecutive goals 60 seconds apart to put the 'Cats ahead 11-9 with 3:15 to play.
New Hampshire returns to action March 4 at home against intrastate rival Dartmouth College. Game time at Memorial Field is 1 p.m.