No. 2 Cortland ends No. 1 Salisbury's 39-game winning streak
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Second-ranked Cortland opened up a 9-2 halftime lead and held off top-ranked Salisbury in the second half to earn a 12-8 victory in non-conference action on Sunday. The Red Dragons improved to 15-0 on the season and captured their 50th consecutive home win. The Sea Gulls, the defending Div. III national champions, fell to 16-1 and had their 39-game winning streak snapped with the loss, their first since the 2012 title game versus Trinity.
Erica Geremia led Cortland with six points on four goals and two assists. Taylor Reh and Kristen Ohberg each tallied three goals. Emma Hayes-Hurley recorded one goal and one assist, Tara Monaghan netted one goal and jMarilyn Farrell notched one assist.
Goalie Liz Ingalls made four saves for the Red Dragons. Hayes-Hurley registered a game-high seven draw controls.
Shelby Nemecek paced Salisbury's offense with four goals. Kate Haker tallied a team-high five points on three goals and two assists. Bethany Baer scored a goal, and Shannon Carta contributed three assists.
Goalie Ashton Wheatley turned aside four shots, caused four turnovers and secured four ground balls for the Sea Gulls. Baer won four draws and Laura Maskell recorded three caused turnovers.
Haker gave the Sea Gulls a 1-0 lead three minutes, 15 seconds into the game before Cortland strung together four consecutive scores, including two from Geremia, to grab a 4-1 lead at the 18:15 mark of the first half. Nemecek stopped the run with her first goal of the game at 16:25, but the Red Dragons closed out the half with five consecutive goals, two each coming from Geremia and Ohberg, to build a 9-2 lead at the break. The Red Dragons won 11-of-12 draw controls in the first 30 minutes and contolled tempo and possession, outshooting Salisbury, 16-3, in the first half.
Ohberg opened the scoring in the second half with her third goal of the game at 25:34 to give the Red Dragons their largest lead of the game at 10-2. Cortland still held an eight-goal advantage at 11-3 with 18:10 remaining after Nemecek and Reh traded scores. From that point, Salisbury began chipping away at the Red Dragons' lead. Haker scored at 17:19 and Carta assisted on back-to-back goals by Nemecek to pull the Sea Gulls to within 11-6 with 9:10 on the clock. Reh halted the momentum with her third score of the game at 7:06 off a Cortland fast break and the lead stood at 12-6. Haker cut the lead to 12-7 at 5:21, and Baer scored at 4:20 as Salisbury cut the advantage to 12-8.
Cortland called timeout after the goal, but Nemecek won the ensuing draw for the Sea Gulls. Cortland forced a turnover with 3:26 remaining and successfully cleared the ball. The Red Dragons burned nearly a minute and a half off the clock before a turnover with just under two minutes remaining. Salisbury gained possession but immediately stepped over the end line to turn the ball back over to Cortland. From that point, the Red Dragons were able to run the rest of the time off the clock and seal the win. During Cortland's last possession, Wheatley was issued a yellow card and the Sea Gulls played the final 15 seconds with an empty net.