from the desk of Michael Holebrook - BSU Sports Information
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Senior forward Brittany Cullinane (Lunenburg, Mass.) notched a hat trick and added a pair of assists to lead the Bridgewater State University field hockey team to a convincing 8-2 Little East Conference win over visiting Western Connecticut State University on Saturday afternoon at Swenson Field.
The Bears improve to 7-4 on the season and 5-4 in the Little East standings, while the Colonials fall to 3-10 overall and 1-7 in conference play.
Senior midfielder Brianna Reda (New Milford, Conn.) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead just 67 seconds into the game. Reda corralled a high bounding ball off a deflection and chipped a shot over the BSU goalkeeper.
That lead was short-lived, however, as BSU junior forward Tori O'Dea (South Dennis, Mass.) scored off a penalty corner in the fourth minute to knot the score at 1-1. O'Dea tipped home a long blast by Cullinane for her second goal of the season.
Cullinane gave the Bears a 2-1 lead in the seventh minute as she rifled home a shot from ten yards out coming in from the right side. Cullinane extended the BSU advantage to 3-1 in the 14th minute as she stick-handled in from 30 yards out and beat the Colonials' netminder one-on-one.
Sophomore midfielder Samantha Hayes (Norwood, Mass.) scored off a terrific pass from Cullinane to make it a three-goal game in the 22nd minute. Cullinane found a wide-open Hayes stationed in front of the net. Hayes calmly slipped a shot inside the left post for her seventh marker of the year.
Sophomore forward Alexandra Zoebisch (Plymouth, Mass.) capped off the first half scoring in the 32nd minute with her first collegiate goal as she tucked a shot inside the near post off a nice feed from freshman forward Jacquelyn Legendre (Westport, Mass.).
The Bears netted the first three goals of the second half to increase the BSU lead to 8-1. Junior midfielder Christine Curran (Ayer, Mass.) tallied her first collegiate goal in the 38th minute off a penalty corner with Hayes picking up the assist. Cullinane completed the hat trick in the 53rd minute as she knocked home a crossing pass from sophomore forward Maggie McDonald (East Dennis, Mass.). Sophomore forward Maura Mahoney (Millville, Mass.) potted her first collegiate goal in the 67th minute as she redirected a shot by Hayley Grimes (East Longmeadow, Mass.) inside the near post.
With her three goals, Cullinane increased her season total to 15 and her career total to 32. She also has 73 points (32G, 9A) for her career which is good for sixth place all-time in program history.
Western freshman forward Carly Matasavage (Middlebury, Conn.) rounded out the scoring with her fourth goal of the season with less than three minutes left to play in the contest. Matasavage finished a crossing pass from junior midfielder Hannah Redstone (Washington, Conn.).
Bridgewater held a 38-19 shot advantage for the game as well as a 14-5 edge in penalty corners.
BSU sophomore netminder Allison Chappell (Raynham, Mass.) made eight saves in a little over 52 minutes of work (52:03) to record her seventh win of the season. Freshman Jillian Delany (Foxboro, Mass.) played the final 17:57 and turned aside three shots.
In upcoming action, the Bears host Anna Maria College on Thursday night at 7 pm, while the Colonials entertain Little East foe Fitchburg State University on Tuesday evening also at 7 pm.