By: Greg Levinsky
Deadlocked in a 1-1 tie late in the second half, Ally Hammel took control. A sight more familiar than aberration, the senior co-captain caged the game-winner as the 24th-ranked Boston University field hockey team defeated Holy Cross 2-1 on Friday.
The Terriers (10-6, 6-0 Patriot League) ran the table in conference play for the second-straight year.
“It’s awesome and I’m happy that I could do it for them, my seniors and teammates,” Hammel said.
Five seniors were honored before the ultimate regular season home game. Maika Akroyd, Kathleen Keegan, Kara Enoch, Allie Doggett and Hammel enjoyed a pregame ceremony.
Hammel said the team had a celebration in the locker room before emerging joyously to take care of business on the field.
BU head coach Sally Starr said it will be “tough” to see this year’s senior class depart.
“They come to practice every day ready to work hard, ready to have fun,” Starr said. “Just a great group of kids ready to excel in the classroom and excel on the hockey field.”
The Crusaders (3-12, 2-4) put up a fair effort in conference play, but ran into the perennial Patriot League champs on their home turf at New Balance Field.
Senior Emily Loprete scored the game’s first goal, her conference-leading 12th of the season in the sixth minute to stake a 1-0 Crusaders lead.
“Credit to Holy Cross,” Starr said. “They have us everything we could handle tonight.”
Enoch tied it with her fifth goal of the season in the 20th minute.
Hammel corralled her winning tally on a penalty corner opportunity with just over five minutes to play. A perfect capping to her senior day.
“Scoring the goal, it felt great,” Hammel said. “I’m out there doing it for my team, so I’m really happy to do it for them.”
BU finishes its regular season slate on Sunday with a trip to The Heights for a battle with 13th-ranked Boston College before hosting the Patriot League Championship next weekend.
“We’re definetly confident, but we’re not over confident,” Hammel said. “We’re trying to keep our heads in the game and focus on one day at a time, one practice at a time.”
Greg Levinsky can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregLevinsky