WILKES-BARRE — Needing a win to forge a tie atop WVC Division 2, Meyers threw everything it had into picking up a win Saturday against division-leading Pittston Area.
But the Mohawks were cautious, too, as a loss would all but squash their postseason hopes.
The rivals played to a 1-1 tie Saturday at Miner Park, leaving both squads’ playoff hopes alive with one week remaining in the season.
“That was very exciting,” Meyers senior Bri DiMaggio said of going to overtime and putting 21 shots at Pittston Area goalie Lea Garibaldi. “We had so many shots in overtime. We just kept trying and trying to get one.”
Maurizi did her part, finding a rebound in the 11th minute and giving the Patriots the lead. Pittston Area was running its first penalty corner when the initial shot from the arc by Katrina Mikitish was blocked. The ball was in traffic in front of the goal when Emily Herron tried to guide it home. After a save by Sabrina Robertson on Herron’s try at the right post, the ball was played across to Maurizi.
“Even if you’re the one that scores, it’s a whole team effort,” Maurizi said. “We’re going to keep playing our best each time out. We can’t let down no matter what.”
The first half went up and down the field from there. Pittston Area had six of the seven penalty corners in the half, while the Mohawks had all five of the long corners. They split eight shots evenly.
Meyers applied all the pressure it could muster after halftime. The Mohawks earned nine penalty corners and fired seven shots at Patriots keeper Lea Garibaldi. DiMaggio had two blasts on corners turned aside, Allison Berman’s spinning try just missed catching the post and Betsy Macko nearly found Judah Springer behind the defense on another corner.
Finally, DiMaggio tied the game with a blast from the right wing that Garibaldi only could get a piece of. Berman started the foray with a nifty move into the circle, giving the ball a little backhand flick over a defender’s stick.
“I’m very proud of this team and what we’ve accomplished,” DiMaggio said of her goal. “This has been the best senior year I could have had.”
While a tie was good enough to keep Meyers in the district tourney hunt, the Mohawks went for the win. They had all 10 shots in overtime and earned five corners — including three in the final 90 seconds. Garibaldi was equal to the task, with some help from Sam Moska, Julia Stella and the rest of the Patriots’ defensive efforts. Garibaldi’s biggest stop might have com on Jordyn Sapolis at the post with about 40 seconds remaining.
“Our goal is to make history,” Maurizi said. “This season has been awesome. We look in our gym and we can get the first banner in Pittston Area history (for a division title in field hockey). I’m so proud to be a part of it.”
The work is not done yet, though. Pittston Area (9-1-1 WVC) hosts Tunkhannock (7-3-1) on Monday, then closes at GAR and home against Elk Lake. Meyers (8-2-1) hosts Hanover Area and Elk Lake before closing at Tunkhannock on Friday. The Patriots, Mohawks and Tigers remain the last three teams battling for the division title and the right to play defending state champion Crestwood in the district quarterfinals in two weeks.
Pittston Area 1, Meyers 1, OT
First half — 1. PA, Dana Maurizi (Emily Herron), 19:06. Second half — 2. MEY, Bri DiMaggio, 7:17.
Shots — PA 8; MEY 21. Saves — PA 13 (Lea Garibaldi); MEY 3 (Sabrina Robertson). Penalty corners — PA 10; MEY 15.