Field Hockey - Girls: Abington vs Pennsbury (10/2/2017)

Abington vs. Pennsbury

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Game Date Sport Game Type Overtime
October 2nd 2017 Field Hockey - Girls League Game Yes

Abington Comments

Abington vs Pennsbury

Abington 2
Pennsbury 3 in OT

Abington goals
Anna Joseph goal
Paige Doyle goal

Natalie McNamara 2

Abington goalie
Mackensie Grenier 20 saves including a stroke in the second half

2-2 first half

Abington 5-7 overall, 3-6 SOL

Pennsbury Comments

Nobody ever said playing for a championship is supposed to be easy. On the other hand, if you want to be a championship team, you have to do what the Pennsbury field hockey team did Monday afternoon at Abington - win really, really tough games against inspired opponents who want nothing more than to derail your run.

Maddie Hackman knocked in the game-winning goal five minutes into overtime as Pennsbury earned a thrilling 3-2 win over Abington to remain unbeaten in the Suburban One League National Conference at 8-0. The Ghosts pressured Pennsbury from the opening whistle on the turf at PSU-Abington, and it took huge plays from Amy Ronin and Annie Price on the defensive end of the field in the final minute of regulation - while the Falcons were playing one player down due to a card - and then relentlessness from Hackman and Nell Webber on the offensive end in the OT to pull out the win.

"This was nerve-racking," said Pennsbury coach Jamie Parell. "Abington was ready to go from the start of the game, and they never let up at all. Both teams competed really well the entire game, and I'm really proud of how we responded to the challenge from Abington. I've been telling them that this league is really tough, and it's not going to get any easier."

It certainly won't in the next game for Pennsbury, who hosts second-place Neshaminy Friday afternoon. Pennsbury is now 8-0 in the league, while Neshaminy's only league loss came earlier this season against Pennsbury. Before then, though, Neshaminy has a date Wednesday with Abington.

Abington is the only team this year to score more than one goal in a game against Pennsbury, and the Ghosts have now done it twice, after Pennsbury's 6-3 win in the first meeting between the two this year. As in that game, Abington scored early. Unlike that game, Pensbury was never able to take control.

Anna Joseph finished a cross from Natalie McNamara off a counter to make it 1-0, but Pennsbury would answer, getting goals from Olivia Mauro and Nell Webber to go up 2-1 midway through the first half. Abington answered shortly after that, as Paige Doyle scored off a corner, evening it at 2-2.

It would stay that way through a saved penalty stroke by Abington goalie McKenzie Greiner late in the first half and then a wild second half that saw both teams have numerous chances, both goalies make big saves and a huge defensive save by Ronin off a drive off of a penalty corner that seemed like it was heading in.

Abington had the best chances as regulation ticked away, after Pennsbury was called for a five-minute card with 1:48 left in regulation. Ronin made the biggest, stopping a 2 on 1 rush off another counter by the Ghosts by stealing a pass and clearing it, and then Price was able to just get her stick on the ball in the circle twice to prevent a scoring opportunity and then finally clear it down the field.

The card carried over into the overtime, which began with Pennsbury down a player. It ended a few seconds after the teams got back to even strength, after Hackman almost single-handedly kept the ball in the Abington end before getting it to Webber, who dribbled into the circle and then, falling down, got the ball back to Hackman, who tapped it in for the win.

"We have to come out with great intensity from the start Friday, because we know Neshaminy will," Parell said. "We can't celebrate this game too long. It was a great effort from both teams, and a lot of players made a real contribution to this victory."

Pennsbury goalie Michelle Deodati made five of her seven saves in the second half, while Greiner made 10 saves and was great at clearing the ball all game.

Pennsbury outshot Abington 24-13, but shots were 9-9 after halftime.