Field hockey remains in postseason hunt, rallies past Franklin Pierce, 2-1

RINDGE, N.H. - The Saint Michael's College field hockey team remains in the Northeast-10 Conference Tournament hunt with two games left after rallying past Franklin Pierce University, 2-1, on Saturday at Sodexo Field. The Purple Knights are 5-11 overall and 3-5 in the league, just half a game out of the sixth and final postseason spot, while the Ravens fell to 3-13 and 1-8. Saint Michael's split its last eight games while sending the hosts to their 13th loss in 14 games.

Junior Kelly Celata (Dedham, Mass./Dedham) and sophomore Samantha Burns (North Creek, N.Y./Johnsburg Central) both scored for the Purple and Gold, while classmate Sarah Healey (Canton, Mass./Canton) had four stops.

Junior Chanelle Letarte (Lunenburg, Mass./Lunenburg) tallied for Franklin Pierce, while first-year Sarah Cote (Athol, Mass./Athol) did not make a save.

The teams combined for eight shots during the opening half, and only 14 for the game, with Letarte taking the initial pair of attempts in the sixth minute, including scoring off a scramble in the circle at 5:21 for her team's lone tally. Healey stopped the next two shots heading toward the goal, in the 10th and 26th minutes, to keep it 1-0.

During the 29th minute, the only Purple Knight penalty corner of the contest led to Celata redirecting senior Hali Roy's (South Pomfret, Vt./Woodstock Union) shot at 28:06 to knot the score. Healey denied a go-ahead try by the Ravens with fewer than two minutes remaining in the opening stanza before a follow-up shot went wide.

Franklin Pierce took six of the final eight shots of the game and the last eight penalty corners, but Burns broke through to provide the only offensive output in the second half. After receiving a pass in the middle of the circle from senior Julia Heald (Bedford, N.H./Bishop Brady), Burns spun and slipped a shot past Cote at the 42-minute mark.

Healey was tested with a shot on goal only once in the final stanza, denying a bid in the 61st minute, and the final two Raven shots went wide of the mark. The hosts ran off corners in the 67th and 68th minutes but did not generate a shot.

The Purple Knights complete the road portion of their schedule on Tuesday at Bentley University at 6 p.m.