Season closes with two overtime victories

THE ENGINEERS PERSISTED until the very end of the 2015 season with wins against Castleton State and Oneonta.

RPI field hockey finished its season on a high note last week with wins against Castleton State and Oneonta. After the Spartans took a 2-1 lead in the second half at Castleton last Wednesday, the Engineers scored five unanswered goals in the final 25 minutes to win 6-2. Then, against Oneonta, sophomore midfielder Kate Batzinger finished Rensselaer’s season with a goal 1:18 into overtime to give the Engineers their 11th victory of the season.

In the road game against Castleton State, sophomore forward Jena Nawfel set up senior forward Hana Murphy for her fourth goal of the season just six minutes in, tying the game at one. The next score didn’t occur until eight minutes had elapsed in the second half, when Castleton forward Hannah Williams deflected a shot off fellow Castleton forward Sarah Wells into the RPI net to give the Spartans a 2-1 edge. The lead didn’t last long, though.

In the 46th minute, RPI senior midfielder Celia D’Agostino scored on a penalty shot to tie the game. Then, three minutes later, junior midfielder Colleen Fowler collected her own miss from in front of the Spartans net, to give Rensselaer a 3-2 lead. D’Agostino assisted the score, which followed a penalty corner by the senior midfielder.

Down the stretch, sophomore defender Mekayla Wakeman scored twice off of penalty corners and sophomore defender Jane Edgington tallied her first goal of the season to bring the Engineers to their 6-2 win. Freshman goalie Rachel Kaufman saved 10 of 12 shots she faced, which gave RPI the win, while Castleton goalie Meeghan Doris saved 11 of 17 shots that went on the Spartan’s net.

Then, on Saturday, the Engineers outshot the Red Dragons 27-6 during the first 70 minutes of play, but still the game remained scoreless. Kaufman saved all four shots she faced while Oneonta goalie Krista Servedio turned aside 17 RPI shots to keep the game tied. But her masterful shutout was broken up early in overtime when one shot from Batzinger from just inside the top of the circle went past her and gave the home team the victory.

This week, senior midfielder Celia D’Agostino was selected to play in the annual Division Three senior game, an invitation-only game for the best senior field hockey players in Division Three. In addition, freshman goalie Rachel Kaufman was selected as the Liberty League’s Rookie of the Week for the third time this season. As for the team itself, they finished with 11 wins, a notable improvement from the 2014 campaign that they ended with a record of 6-11.