Late goal paces field hockey to fourth overall

Sports Staff Writer
Thursday, November 11, 2010

It was the final game wearing Bruno brown for field hockey tri-captains Cassie Puhalla ’11, Tacy Zysk ’11 and Katie Hyland ’11 Saturday afternoon on Warner Roof. The younger members of the team (6-11, 3-4 Ivy League) were determined to bring home a win for their senior captains.

“We’re all definitely playing for our seniors,” said forward Leslie Springmeyer ’12 before Saturday’s game against Yale (11-6, 5-2). “We’re looking to take them down.”

That’s exactly what Bruno did, besting the Bulldogs 3-2 in front of a home crowd packed with friends and family. It was Springmeyer who helped the Bears strike first, scoring on a pass from fellow forward Abigail Taft ’12 for her 11th goal on the season.

It was just the start of an offensive-minded first half. Taft added a goal of her own — her tenth on the season — in between Yale forward Erica Borgo’s two first-half goals, leaving the score at 2-2 going into halftime.

The second period was a tense one for the Bears, as they were outshot 14–7. Yale also had an advantage in penalty corners, drawing eight in the period to Bruno’s two. But goalie Lauren Kessler ‘11.5 was not phased by the Yale offensive, as she notched six saves and combined with the team’s backs to keep the Bulldogs off the board in the last 43 minutes of the game.

It was back Elara Mosquera ’13 who provided the deciding goal for the Bears, ripping a pass from Hyland into the back of the net for the game-winner.

“With only five minutes left on the clock, to score that was clutch,” said Head Coach Tara Harrington ’94. “As soon as it hit her stick we all knew it was going in.”

The score was Mosquera’s fourth goal on the season and Hyland’s fifth assist.

But the game was not over. Bruno had to fend off a furious Bulldog counterattack including back-to-back penalty corners with no time remaining on the clock. The staunch Brown defense answered by locking in and clearing the second corner, putting the game in the win column.

The victory moved Bruno into a tie for fourth in the Ivy League, the highest team finish in five years. Harrington credits the three captains for the team’s improvement this year and setting the tone for the future.

“The three of them together with their leadership, their skill and their love of being a field hockey player have put this program back on a solid foundation,” Harrington said. “A lot of our success this year was based on how those women chose to lead this team.”

Hyland has been selected to play in the Senior Game, an honor for which only two other Ivy League players have been tapped this year. She also broke the school record for number of consecutive games played in a career with 68.

Zysk and Hyland end their careers tied for 13th on the Brown all-time points list with 41. Springmeyer and Taft will enter next year in the second and ninth position on the all-time goal list, respectively.