NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Thanks to seniors producing both goals and a shutout during their final career games, the Saint Michael's College field hockey team blanked Southern Connecticut State University, 2-0, on Saturday during Northeast-10 Conference play at Jess Dow Field. In both teams' season finales, the Purple Knights improved to 6-12 overall and 3-9 in the league, while the Owls ended up at 4-14 and 2-10.
Seniors Carolyn Avery (Lexington, Mass./Lexington) and Abby Dusha (Greenwich, N.Y./Greenwich Central School) both scored for the Purple and Gold, and classmate Abigail Bowie (Readfield, Maine/Kents Hill School) recorded six saves for her seventh career shutout, tying Lisa Anderson for 10th in program history. With 14 victories, Bowie finished one shy of the top 10 despite not appearing as an underclassman, and capped her career sixth in saves (282), seventh in minutes (2,604:27) and 10th in goals-against average (2.07). Each of her minutes came consecutively, as she was the only keeper to mind the net during a game the last two years, with that straight-minutes streak a school record. Bowie's 134 saves in 2016 are the eighth most ever by a Purple Knight. First-year Brianna Craft made 12 stops for the Owls.
Saint Michael's won for the fifth time in its last seven meetings with Southern Connecticut State and finished off a season which saw it head to overtime a program-record seven times, suffering five of its six one-goal setbacks in extra time.
The Purple Knights held a 15-8 advantage in shots during the first half while each team ran off seven penalty corners, but Craft had nine of her stops and Bowie two during a scoreless stanza. The Owls rattled off the first two shots and three corners of the contest within the first 9:28 before Saint Michael's garnered opportunities, including as junior Jenna Deschaine (Claremont, N.H./Stevens) was stopped on a give-and-go during a corner set in the 19th minute.
In the 25th minute, sophomore Janelle Robinson (Clifton Park, N.Y./Shenendehowa) had an attempt denied, and Dusha put a follow-up bid on Craft before sending another try wide of the goal. That kicked off a 1:56 stretch during which the Purple Knights had six shots, with Craft making four saves.
The second half began with Craft recording a 38th-minute stop on Dusha, and sophomore Maddy Dobecki (Scarborough, Maine/Scarborough) had an initial shot turned away at 44:15 before Avery pounced on the rebound four seconds later and broke the deadlock. Bowie denied sophomore Jacqueline Touzos in the 46th minute, and Dusha capped a two-goal stretch in a matter of 4:04 by firing low near the goal line off of sophomore Katie Leonard's (Carmel, N.Y./The Ursuline School) feed to make it 2-0 at 48:23.
Bowie made three saves during the remainder of regulation, kicking off the stretch with a save of sophomore Emily Stross' 53rd-minute shot before two Owl teammates had follow-up tries that were off the mark. In the 62nd minute, Bowie stopped senior Bailey McGinnis' initial try before her second shot was blocked, and a save early in the 70th minute on the game's final shot clinched Bowie and the Purple Knights the shutout.