Field Hockey: Northwestern falls in OT again, 4-3 to Michigan

Cole Paxton, Reporter

An inability to finish chances once again plagued the Wildcats in a loss on Friday.

Despite putting 17 shots on goal, No. 16 Northwestern (9-6, 2-3 Big Ten) fell to No. 14 Michigan (12-3, 5-1) 4-3 in double overtime at Lakeside Field.

While the Cats struggled to capitalize on their chances, the visiting Wolverines scored on 4 of their 6 shots on goal, including back Lauren Thomas’ game winner at 94:26. Michigan tied the game at 3 with just over five and a half minutes remaining in regulation when forward Shannon Scavelli beat NU sophomore goalkeeper Lindsay von der Luft with a shot from roughly 15 yards.

“We put enough on the board,” Cats coach Tracey Fuchs said of her team’s three goals. “We just needed to stop some on the defensive end.”

NU, however, had seemingly endless opportunities to add to its tally, but Michigan goalkeeper Sam Swenson was ready for nearly every challenge. She made a career high 14 saves, stopping the Cats on penalty corners, rebounds and breakaways.

“I thought the difference in the game was their goalkeeper,” Fuchs said. “She made some really, really world-class saves.”

NU opened the scoring just a minute into the match when senior midfielder Caroline Troncelliti found the net from a penalty corner. The Wolverines equalized about 18 minutes into the game with a goal from midfielder Katie Trombetta, and took the lead just 30 seconds later when midfielder Veerle Lubbers scored.

The Cats however, responded with goals in quick succession in the second half. After Troncelliti leveled the score at 2 following an impressive individual effort, freshman forward Eva van Agt redirected freshman midfielder Puck Pentenga’s shot past a diving Swenson about a minute and a half later.

Scavelli’s equalizer came just seconds after NU took its timeout, and Swenson’s strong play helped the Wolverines hold off the Cats before Thomas’s winner.

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