RINDGE, N.H. (October 26, 2019) – For the first time since 2011, the Franklin Pierce University field hockey team is headed to the postseason, as the Ravens locked up their fifth all-time bid in the Northeast-10 Conference Championship with a 4-2, Senior Day win over Pace on Saturday afternoon. Appropriately, senior forward Madison Gagnon (Milford, N.H.) highlighted the victory, as she tallied her first career hat trick to lead the way for the Ravens at Sodexo Field.
With the win, the Ravens move to an 8-8 (7-5 NE10) record on the year, while the Setters fall to a 4-11 (4-9 NE10) record. Franklin Pierce currently sits as the sixth seed in the league, and the top eight finishers will qualify for the NE10 Championship. Five teams remain alive for the final two spots.
All seven of the Ravens' seniors started the game, including the first collegiate start for senior goalkeeper Katelyn Benoit (Goffstown, N.H.). Benoit made one save over the opening 5:13 before departing and would ultimately chalk up the first win (1-0) of her career.
It did not take long for the Ravens to open the scoring, as Gagnon found herself on a breakaway against Pace sophomore goalkeeper Grace Henderson, who made the first save on Gagnon, but was unable to stop the rebound attempt. The Ravens took a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute, on Gagnon's third goal of the season.
Later, in the 18th minute, the Ravens doubled their lead with a goal from sophomore back Julianne Sacco (Southborough, Mass.), who was assisted by senior forward Jessica Greeley (Winslow, Maine). The goal came off a penalty-corner opportunity. Sacco found Greeley on the edge of the scoring circle, and the latter returned to ball to Sacco, who cashed in her team-leading seventh goal of the campaign.
Gagnon struck again near the end of the second quarter, in the 29th minute, with a shot from the right side of the circle. Henderson was able to catch a piece of the shot, but the ball trickled through and into the far corner of the net for Gagnon's second goal of the game, which marked her first career multiple-goal game and extended the Ravens' lead to 3-0.
The Setters would score the next two goals of the game to cut the gap to 3-2. Freshmen Jessica Wolfe (36th minute) and Hannah Wyllie (47th minute) would be the Setters goal scorers, as the former picked up her fourth goal of the season and the latter notched her third. Freshman forward Cienna Bosher assisted on Wolfe's goal, while Wolfe in-turn provided the helper for Wyllie.
The Ravens would end up prevailing as Gagnon added the icing in the cake with her third goal of the day in the 59th minute. The assist came from freshman forward Christine Jarowicz (Kennebunk, Maine), who has four points (1-2-4) in the last four games.
Junior goaltender Olivia Barnes (Greenwich, N.Y.) took over for Benoit and went the rest of the way, but did not make a save while allowing two goals over the final 54:47.
Henderson (4-11) finished with two saves against six shots on goal in front of the Pace cage.
The Ravens will be back in action on Tuesday, Oct. 29, as they take on Saint Anselm College on Sodexo field at 4 p.m.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce field hockey apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' brand new online store (https://www.shopfpuravens.com).