March 19, 2014

Tiernan Caps Temple's Rally with Overtime Strike

from press release

PHILADELPHIA - Sophomore Nicole Tiernan scored the game-tying and game-winning goals to cap an incredible effort by Temple lacrosse in a 9-8 overtime win against Hofstra (5-4). The Owls (3-5) were down by six goals in the first half, but later scored the final four goals of regulation to send the game to an extra period.

It was a rain-soaked and chilly afternoon at Geasey Field, made more miserable for Temple when Hofstra scored the first five goals of the contest. But by halftime the Owls had cut a six-goal deficit down to four, and they went on to outscore the Pride 6-1 in the second half.

Nicole Tiernan (right) and Megan Pinkerton celebrating after the game-winning goal

"The story of the game was a tremendous amount of heart," said Temple head coach Bonnie Rosen. "So many players contributed to this win today, and some players who hadn't played very much for us yet came in and really helped change the momentum. What we've been working on is the team owning the game on the field, and the light bulb went off today."

Freshman Carly Demato, playing in only her fourth game as an Owl, recorded her second hat trick in a row in leading Temple with three goals. Sophomore Megan Pinkerton, playing in only her second game of the season, came off the bench to score two key goals for Temple.

Demato's first goal was the only one in the first 26 minutes and 50 seconds for the Owls, as they found themselves in a 7-1 hole near the end of the first half. She added a second with 3:10 remaining on a free-position shot, and a minute later Pinkerton was also able to convert on a free-position opportunity.

Those back-to-back goals gave Temple momentum heading into the second half, and cut the deficit to four, 7-3.

Demato completed the hat trick less than five minutes into the second period, but Hofstra answered a few minutes later when Brittain Altomare scored her fourth goal of the game.

Altomare's goal with 20:21 left would prove to be Hofstra's last of the contest.

Near the midway point of the second half, freshman Morgan Glassford scored on a free position, starting what would become a 5-0 run to close the game. Pinkerton and senior Lea Britton scored three minutes apart to put Temple within one, 8-7 with 5:56 remaining.

Just 30 seconds after Britton's free-position goal, Tiernan ran in for an unassisted game-tying goal. The final five and a half minutes of regulation were intense as both teams tried to pull ahead.

The second half was dominated by Temple offensively, as the Owls took 15 shots to Hofstra's four. In the final stretch, Hofstra goalkeeper Kelsey Gregerson made one save, while Temple's Jaqi Kakalecik did not face a shot on a goal.

Kakalecik was not as fortunate in overtime, and had to come up with two big saves in the first three minutes. She was caught out of the cage in the first minute and a half, but Temple dodged a bullet as Hofstra's shot sailed high.

Tiernan finally attempted the Owls' first shot of overtime with 2:07 left in the six-minute period, but it went high. With just 39 seconds remaining before the teams would have gone to sudden death, Tiernan found a hole and sailed a shot past Gregerson for game-winner.

The last draw control was a crucial one, but Temple had been dominating them all game long. Britton corralled it and the Owls held possession as clock ran out.

"This was a game that was won by the whole team," said Rosen. "They have been seeking this feeling and it's really great to see them have it...we never try to (need a win) but it feels really good. What feels good about it is that every good play on the field was earned. It wasn't given to us. I really think this was a huge foundation piece to be able to move forward."

Temple will play one final non-conference game as the Owls travel to UMBC on Saturday, March 22 at noon. They will open BIG EAST play on Saturday, March 29 at home against UConn.

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