Field Hockey Clinches Postseason Berth
(Posted October 24, 2006)
Juniata 1, Elizabethtown 0 HUNTINGDON, Pa. - The 13th-ranked Juniata College field hockey team didn\'t necessarily need a victory over 11th-ranked Elizabethtown College Tuesday afternoon to insure the Eagles a berth in the Commonwealth Conference postseason. But Juniata went ahead and got the victory anyway as a late second-half goal gave Juniata the 1-0 win. The Eagles are now 15-2 on the season and 5-2 in the conference, while the Blue Jays fell to 15-3 overall and are also 5-2 in conference play. Michelle Campbell (Northern Lebanon/Annville) struck with the only goal of the match with just three minutes remaining in regulation to give Juniata the 1-0 lead. Leslie Stern (Red Lion/Felton) assisted on the score which came on Juniata\'s seventh shot of the match. As it had done all half, Elizabethtown put the pressure on in the final three minutes, including earning its 10th penalty corner of the half with less than 30 seconds to play, but Abby Funk (Lewisburg/Lewisburg) stopped a Laura Rinck shot in the last 10 seconds to secure the win for Juniata. Funk recorded her team-record 10th shutout of the season and helped Juniata claim another milestone as the Eagles matched the program record for victories in a season with 15. It\'s the first time Juniata has claimed 15 wins in the regular season, as the team\'s 15th win in its 2003 season came in the conference postseason. Juniata had the run of the action in the first half, but the Eagles were unable to get a shot on goal to challenge Blue Jays goalie Kristen Callaghan. The Eagles outshot the visitors 4-0 in the half, but did not force a save from Callaghan. It was a different story in the second half as the Blue Jays fired off 10 shots, and forced Funk into seven saves. The visitors earned eight penalty corners in the second half, but Juniata\'s defense came up big every time, thwarting several goal-scoring chances in the circle. By virtue of now holding the tie-breaker against Elizabethtown Juniata will be either the number-two, or number-three seed in the four-team Commonwealth postseason, depending on the result of an evening match between Messiah College and Susquehanna University on Tuesday. A Susquehanna win would make Juniata the two seed, and give the Eagles a home postseason match, while a Messiah victory would make Juniata the third seed. Juniata will play its final regular-season home match on Thursday as the Eagles take on 18th-ranked Alvernia College. ###
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