Senior forward Maggie Kennedy led a vicious Springfield College attack against Bridgewater State Thursday night. Kennedy scored three goals and picked up two assists en route to a much needed win 6-2 win for the Pride. Kennedy had a career high eight points in the match and became the fifth Springfield College field hockey player since 1980 to record 100+ career points.
“It’s reassuring knowing that all my hard work is paying off,” said Kennedy. “This win was so necessary and was so good for us to go into conference play.”
Coming off the bench, Kennedy contributed immediately 15 minutes into the game. She received the ball at the top of the striking arch from her teammate Morgan Bronk and fired a wrist shot that made its way into the lower left corner of the net.
After the goal, Bridgewater St. quickly answered with a goal from Samantha Hayes, her seventh goal of the year. Hayes received the ball about five yards inside the arch, saw some room, and hit a shot that made it past a couple defenders and Springfield keeper Emmalie Drake to make in 1-1 with 17 minutes to play in the half.
In the 28th minute, senior midfielder Ann Mahoney had the ball well behind half field and sent a sizzling diagonal pass across the field to her teammate Taylor Conley. Once she received it, Conley saw Kennedy running horizontally to her right. Conley sent the pass to a sprinting Kennedy, and she received it inside the arch. After turning and settling herself, Kennedy hit a crafty shot into the left corner of the net, giving the Pride the 2-1 lead as the first half came to a close.
Led by Kennedy’s aggressive play and powerful shot, Springfield netted four goals in the second half and more than doubled its shot total in the first half. The first one came just five minutes in the half from sophomore forward Belle Copponi. Kennedy got the assist when she hit a shot that Bears goalie Allison Chappell blocked, but not enough to prevent it from getting behind her. Copponi was right there and put the ball in the open net to give the Pride a 3-1 lead.
Eight minutes later, Janet Maher answered for the Bears as she hit a wrist shot into the right corner of the goal that trimmed the lead to 3-2.
After that, the Pride responded with a new type of intensity and dominated the rest of the game.
“You could see some patches in the first half where we were inconsistent. As the game went on, especially in the second half, I think we just blew the doors open,” said head coach Melissa Sharpe.
With 10 minutes to play, Kennedy again hit a shot at Chappell that deflected off her leg pads. The ball rolled into the direction of Conley, who calmly put the ball in the back of the net for her second goal of the year. With the assist, this marked Kennedy’s 100th career point.
“[Maggie’s performance] was good for her tonight,” said Sharpe. “Moving forward, I hope she rides that momentum and really finishes strong.”
Kennedy would get points 101 and 102 in the 61st minute when she finally was able to finish a goal after four straight shots by the Pride within five yards of the goal. Kennedy, Copponi, Mahoney, and Conley all had shots on goal that were blocked by Chappell. Kennedy got the rebound and finished for her 10th goal of the year.
The Pride’s last goal came from Taylor Field as she picked up a loose ball and hit a shot into the lower left corner of the goal.
“I think [the game] went well overall. I’m pleased with the results,” said Sharpe.
This win improves the Pride to 6-5, and ends their five game losing streak. Next up, they travel to Smith in a NEWMAC matchup on Saturday October 7th at 1 p.m.