WALTHAM, Mass. – Junior Gina Lirange (Auburn/Auburn HS), Bentley University's leading scorer, netted the decisive goal with 21:46 left as the Falcons bested visiting St. Michael's College in Northeast-10 Conference field hockey Tuesday night.
The win boosted the Falcons to 11-6 overall and 5-4 in the NE-10, keeping coach Jessica Spencer's team in sole possession of fourth place with one regular season game to play, Saturday afternoon at Adelphi University. A win in that one would give the Falcons a first-round home game in next week's conference playoffs while a loss would put the team on the road.
Sophomore Sally James (Mequon, Wisc./Univ. School of Milwaukee HS) put Bentley in front early, knocking in a loose ball near the far post in the sixth minute. The Purple Knights answered in the 27th minute with sophomore Mackenzie Hudson (Stoughton) scoring her first of the year on a rebound.
It stayed 1-1 until the 49th minute when Lirange redirected a shot from just inside the circle by freshman Tori Ellis (Madison, N.J./Madison HS) into the cage for her 12th goal of the season.
Sophomore Katie Kelley (Walpole, Mass.) recorded a pair of saves en route to her win for the Falcons, and junior Jackie Chisholm (New Braintree) denied three Bentley shots for St. Michael's (5-11, 3-6 NE-10).
Bentley finished its final home game of the regular season with one more shot, 7-6, and one more penalty corner, 6-5.