The Temple field hockey team’s season ended one stop short of its goal on Sunday as the Owls fell to the host University of Massachusetts in the Atlantic 10 Conference championship game.
The Minutewomen had control of the game the entire way, and rolled to a 3-0 victory. With its victory at its own Garber Field in Amherst, UMass earned the A-10’s automatic berth in the NCAA Championship Tournament.
Massachusetts built on its perfect conference record, moving to 7-0 in A-10 play.
The Owls, fell to 11-11 on the season with the loss. Temple’s win total this season was the highest it has ever been during the tenure of current head coach Lauren Fuchs.
The game that boosted the Owls to the title game was a whole lot closer than their loss to the Minutewomen.
Temple and Rhode Island went scoreless through two overtime periods before the Owls finally took the game by winning the penalty-stroke round 5-4. The official final score was 4-3 in favor of Temple.
Rhode Island took a 1-0 lead into halftime. Owl senior Julie Martinez tied the score with 28 minutes left in the game, but the Rams grabbed the lead back with a goal by A-10 Player of the Year Kelly Barnowski eight minutes later.
Temple’s Kacy Ziomek scored the next two goals to take a late advantage. She was assisted on both by Haley Dervinis and Jessica Jaworski, and the lead she gave the Owls almost held up in regulation.
With the ball near the Temple goal and the last seconds elapsing, the Owls committed a foul, giving Rhody one last penalty corner opportunity. The Rams converted with no time left in the clock, sending the game to overtime.
Two overtimes went by and neither team had claimed the victory, so the game went to penalty strokes. Virginia Gonzalez, Jaworski, Melissa DeCesaris, Susan Nase, and Ziomek all nailed their penalty strokes for Temple to deliver the Owls into the final.