Purple Knights post highest goal total in four years, hold on for 6-4 win at Franklin Pierce

RINDGE, N.H. - The Saint Michael's College field hockey team pushed out to a five-goal lead by halftime en route to a 6-4 win over Franklin Pierce University on Thursday at Sodexo Field. The Purple and Gold, which collected its highest goal total since netting seven on Sept. 2, 2009, improved to 2-3 after the non-league game. The Ravens are 1-4.

Sophomore Megan Deschaine (Claremont, N.H./Stevens) scored twice for the Purple Knights, while junior Cassaundra Davis (Newburyport, Mass./Newburyport) scored her fifth goal in three games and added two assists. Senior Kelly Celata (Dedham, Mass./Dedham) and junior Samantha Burns (North Creek, N.Y./Johnsburg Central) each tacked on a goal and an assist, and junior Hannah Beardsley (Essex, Mass./Manchester Essex Regional) tallied. Sophomore Morgan Mazanec (Shelburne, Mass./Mohawk Trail Regional) lent out two helpers, and junior Jackie Chisholm (New Braintree, Mass./Quabbin Regional) stopped seven shots.

Four different players scored for the Ravens, while first-year Amy Zahensky (Bow, N.H./Bow) made four saves during the opening 25:11 to take the loss. Sophomore Colette Donnelly (Woodbury, Conn./Wamogo Regional/Drew) appeared for the final 44:49 but did not register a save.

The visitors grabbed a 2-0 lead by the time 7:06 had elapsed thanks to Deschaine and Beardsley tallying just 1:25 apart. Burns added to the lead at 20:43 when she snuck a hard shot inside the right post, and Deschaine made it 4-0 at 23:26 by tipping in Celata's penalty-corner blast. Only 1:45 later, Celata posted her first goal of the season.

Franklin Pierce began coming back with fewer than 22 minutes remaining in the contest, as senior Alesia Gleason (Harwich, Mass./Harwich) scored on a penalty-corner play at 48:21 before classmate Chanelle Letarte (Lunenburg, Mass./Lunenburg) converted 24 seconds later. Davis pushed the lead to 6-2 at 56:21 following a penalty-corner dish from Mazanec, but first-year Rachel Deneault (Holden, Mass./Wachusett Regional) and sophomore Erin Trainor (Auburn, Mass./Auburn) scored in the 59th and 62nd minutes, respectively, to make it 6-4.

In the final three minutes, Chisholm turned away a pair of shots, including one off of a penalty corner, to help the Purple Knights squelch the hosts' comeback bid.

Saint Michael's returns home to face fifth-ranked LIU Post on Saturday at 11 a.m., in the teams' first meeting since 2002. The Pioneers are ranked by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA).