Field Hockey falls to Nichols in TCCC Championship
DUDLEY, Mass.– Sophomore forward Chelsea Correia (Seekonk, Mass.) had a hat trick to lead the Nichols College field hockey team to its second The Commonwealth Coast Conference Championship title in a 4-1 victory over New England College Saturday at Vendetti Field. The third-seeded Bison held on to a 2-0 first-half lead to snap the Pilgrims’ streak of seven consecutive titles and improve to a program-record 18-3 on the year. Nichols will await the NCAA Championship Tournament pairings, which will be announced on Monday, November 9th at 9 a.m. on www.ncaa.com. New England College stands at 14-8 on the year and now awaits a possible ECAC Tournament bid.
Emily Widdison (Greenfield, Mass.) put Nichols on the board in the 18th minute on a breakaway up the middle of the field. Once she arrived inside the circle, Widdison paused, wound up and fired for the 1-0 lead.
Amber Cottrell (Hoosick Falls, N.Y.) set up Chelsea Correia’s first two goals, as Correia gave the Bison a two-goal cushion headed into halftime with her team-leading 16th marker on the year in the 25th minute. Cottrell sent in a long shot from way outside the circle on the right side that Correia redirected past New England College netminder Mary Roux (Auburn, Mass.).
Roux came up big in the waning minutes of the period, however, as she turned aside a penalty stroke by Nichols senior Sara Bailey (Athol, Mass.) with a butterfly kick save.
The Pilgrims carried that momentum into the second stanza to cut the Bison’s lead in half in the 44th minute. Emily Kuchta (Norwalk, Conn.) converted on a pass across the netfront from Rachel Carnaroli (Bellingham, Mass.), depositing it into an open net after a previous shot attempt on the opposite side had drawn out Nichols goalkeeper Krista-Jean Forand (Plymouth, Mass.).
Chelsea Correia finished off the game with two more goals, the first another hookup from Cottrell almost identical to the first goal in the 52nd minute for a 3-1 lead. She then capped the scoring with an unassisted score at the netfront with less than seven minutes left for her first career hat trick.
Roux finished with 14 saves, while Forand stopped eight shots.
New England College held an 11-5 advantage in penalty corners, while the Bison maintained a 26-17 lead in overall shots.
(Courtesy of Nichols College Sports Information)