By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Heading into Saturday afternoon's battle of undefeated teams in each squad's Ohio Athletic Conference opener, Capital University Women's Lacrosse and John Carroll University knew that only one could leave with an unblemished record. When 60 minutes of play were not enough to decide a winner, the sides went to sudden-victory overtime to decide the outcome and John Carroll was the team that scored the final, deciding goal to hand Capital its first loss of the season 12-11.
With the score knotted at 11 after regulation, the two sides squared up for the start of overtime. Grace Curatolo secured the opening draw control of OT and passed the ball off to Brooke McQuinn. McQuinn then rifled the ball to Gina Vilsack, JCU's leading scorer, in front of the goal. Vilsack, who had already found the back of the net twice, then turned in from the left side, ripped a shot and buried it in the upper-left corner to end the game just 21 seconds into the extra period.
Before heading into overtime, neither team had founds the back of the net since the 10:16 mark of the second half, a score from Kathryn Walton (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington Central) that tied the game at 11. The Crusaders led 9-8 at halftime but the Blue Streaks had a three-goal run that put them up 11-9 to start the second. Kara Hines (Columbus, Ohio/Worthington Kilbourne) scored the first second-half goal for Capital to make the score 11-10 and then Walton equalized.
The goal that Hines will remember, though, came with 5:11 left in the first half. With Capital up 7-6, Hines slotted in the 200th goal of her career, making her the first Capital lacrosse player, men's or women's, to reach 200 career goals.
Taylor Thomas (Massilon, Ohio/Jackson) opened the game's scoring less than a minute in with the assist from Regan Hanood (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington North) but Vilsack tied the game at one just two minutes later. John Carroll went up 2-1 before Capital tied it but then led 4-2 10 minutes into the contest.
The Crusaders knotted the game at four with goals from Thomas and Kailee King (Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Jerome), each of whom assisted on the other's score. Hines scored her first goal of the afternoon to put Cap ahead 5-4 and Thomas made it a 6-4 game with her third of the day. The sides traded scores and Hines picked up her second of the day and Hanood scored the final goal of the first half.
In addition to her four goals, Hines won 10 draw controls and picked up three ground balls. Hanood scored the one goal and dished out five assists to lead Capital with six points. Colleen Grombala led John Carroll with four goals and an assist.
Both goalies were sensational throughout the game with Elyssa Zablo making 12 saves, nine in the second half, for John Carroll and Lisa Lotz (Lynchburg, Va./Jefferson Forest) making 10 for the Crusaders.
Capital (7-1, 0-1 OAC) will now have until Friday, March 30 before hosting Otterbein University when the team will seek its first conference win. That game is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. at Purmort Field at Bernlohr Stadium.