HAMDEN, Conn. - Sophomore Kaitlyn Notarianni (Clarks Summit, Pa.) scored less than five minutes into overtime to give Quinnipiac a dramatic 2-1 win against Monmouth University in a pivotal Northeast Conference battle at the Quinnipiac Field Hockey & Lacrosse Turf Field in Hamden, Conn. With the win, Quinnipiac improves to 3-2 in the Northeast Conference, putting them in a tie with Monmouth for third place in the NEC standings, with the tiebreaker going to Quinnipiac.
"This was a sweet win," head coach Becca Kohli said. "Any Northeast Conference win is important. They are a very good team and we played well. Our defense was strong and aside from the late goal, I'm really happy with how we played."
Senior captain MacKenzie Liptak (Schuylerville, N.Y.) scored her team-leading 11th point of the season less than two minutes into the game with her third goal of the year. After Quinnipiac was awarded a corner, which senior captain Lauren Hartnett (Walpole, Mass.) handled, Christine Grady (Enfield, Conn.) put a shot on goal that Monmouth goalie Melissa Katz kicked away to her right. Liptak slipped behind the defense and found the ball on her stick in front of the goal.
It was a defensive stalemate over the next 68-plus minutes before the Hawks finally got on the board with 48 seconds remaining in the game. Monmouth was awarded a corner, and after the shot was blocked and deflected to the right of QU goalie Jenna Grossman, a shot traveled across the goal mouth, finding Michelle Pieczynski's stick. Pieczynski banged it home, just past the outstretched hand of Grossman, to send the game to overtime.
Notarianni's goal came less than five minutes into the extra frame. Both teams had several opportunities to score prior to that but a strong, mutual defensive effort left both teams scoreless until the 74:47 mark. Notarianni carried the ball downfield, weaving through the defense, before putting a shot on Katz. Katz stopped the first shot but Notarianni was able to get her own rebound. She then flipped a shot over Katz to the far corner of the cage for the winning goal.
"I did that last year," Notarianni said. "I don't remember who it was against, but I remember flipping it over someone's head. I'm just glad I was able to get the rebound and then get the ball up and over."
Quinnipiac returns to action on Thursday, Oct. 22 when it hosts Yale University in a non-conference game set for 3 p.m. at the Quinnipiac Field Hockey & Lacrosse Turf Field in Hamden, Conn.