TOWSON, MD (August 30, 2013) - The Sacred Heart field hockey team opened their season on Friday afternoon by earning a 3-2 victory in a penalty shoot-out over Towson University. The Pioneers and Tigers played to a 2-2 tie through regulation and a pair of overtimes before SHU put the game away thanks to a 2-1 edge in the shoot-out tie-breaker.
SHU r-sophomore Liz Bergman (Blandon, PA) and sophomore Rachel Claroni (Hershey, PA) both scored on their attempts to give the Pioneers the 3-2 victory to open the season. Bergman scored both of the Pioneers' goals in regulation as well.
Towson's (0-1) Kathleen Morris opened the scoring just over 17 minutes in when she converted on a penalty stroke attempt for a 1-0 lead. The Pioneers (1-0) wasted little time in evening the score as Bergman notched her first of the day when she converted a penalty stroke of her own just over three minutes later.
The Tigers kept the offensive pressure on in the first half and buried their second goal just before the break. Towson had eight of their 14 shots come in the first stanza and freshman Sam Zelenack delivered her first career goal and a 2-1 lead when she scored unassisted with just over three minutes to play in the half.
The Pioneers turned the tables in the second half and outshot the Tigers 5-1. Bergman produced the game-tying goal at the 61:33 mark, when she buried a feed from Claroni right in front of goal. SHU had the first chance to score first in overtime, earning a penalty corner a minute in. Bergman got a shot off but was denied by Towson goalkeeper Brittany Varacallo.
Varcallo and SHU goalkeeper Mary Altepeter (Chesterfield, MO) each made three saves apiece in the two overtimes to send the game to a penalty shoot-out. Bergman opened the session burying her attempt. After Zelenack tied it at 1-1, Claroni finished off her attempt to give SHU the win.
Altepeter finished with six saves in earning the win.
The Pioneers will be back in action Saturday afternoon when they head to Villanova for a 2 pm match-up.