When and Where: October 24, 2017 – Colchester, Vt. (Duffy Field)
Score: Southern New Hampshire University 1, Saint Michael's College 0 (SO)
Records: SNHU 7-9 (3-8 Northeast-10), SMC 7-10 (3-8 Northeast-10)
After junior Melanie Rennie (Madison, Conn.) steered aside 10 shots and maintained a clean sheet through 100 minutes of action, the Southern New Hampshire University field hockey team blanked Saint Michael's College, 2-0, in a shootout to earn a 1-0, Northeast-10 Conference, victory over the Purple Knights Tuesday.
Rennie and her counterpart, Anna Hurley, kept both sides off the board through the duration of regulation and two overtimes before taking to their respective cages for the shootout. The first two shooters for the Penmen and Saint Michael's were unable to solve the netminders, but sophomore Alison Hildreth (Hampton, N.H.) finally broke through with the first attempt of the third round. After Rennie held her line for the two ensuing Purple Knight tries, senior Erin Frost (East Andover, N.H.) secured the victory by depositing the ball into the back of the frame.
Both teams had opportunities throughout the contest, and they exchanged a handful of chances in the opening half. Saint Michael's posed the first threat in the 17th minute when Marieke Algie's drive from the top of the circle made its way through traffic before skirting just wide of the left post. Just over a minute later, freshman Hélène Servais (Brussels, Belgium) matriculated the ball down the left wing before unloading a drive that Hurley sprawled out to stop. In similar fashion to Servais, junior Maddie Holt (Seabrook, N.H.) drove down the left side to create a scoring chance. After maneuvering around a defender, Holt put a shot on target that Hurley steered aside in the 29th minute. The Purple Knights turned in the finest scoring bid of the first, as Algie sprung Morgan Johnston on a breakaway against Rennie with just under four minutes to play. Rennie was up to the task, however, and kicked away Johnston's attempt to keep the game scoreless.
The Penmen were afforded the best chances of regulation in the waning moments, as they earned a trio of untimed penalty corners with no time left on the clock. The Saint Michael's defense was again up to the challenge, blocking two shots and clearing away the final attempt to force extra time.
After a scoreless 85 minutes of play through regulation and overtime, Johnston again narrowly missed out on playing hero in the 87th minute. Johnston possessed the ball at the top of the circle before Rennie came charging off her line to challenge the ball. Johnston tucked a shot five-hole, but sophomore Marissa Leger (Holliston, Mass.) slid out full extension to sweep the attempt away from the goal line and maintain the scoreless deadlock.
- Southern New Hampshire held a 19-16 edge in shots despite being at an 8-4 disadvantage through the two overtimes. The Penmen sent eight of their shots on goal, while the Purple Knights saw 11 attempts find their way on-cage.
- SNHU garnered 11 penalty corners, including seven in the second half, while SMC drew 13 corners, of which five came in the two overtime sessions.
- Rennie's shutout is her fourth of the season and eighth of her career.
The Penmen wrap up their 2017 campaign on Saturday (Oct. 28) when they make the trip to Southern Connecticut University for a 1 p.m. clash with the Owls.
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