By Bradley Schlegel
Phillylaxcrosse.com, Posted 4/30/16
Kristin Burnetta scored the final two goals to lift the Agnes Irwin School to a stunning 7-6 overtime victory over visiting Episcopal Academy in the Inter-Ac League on Friday.
Burnetta forced overtime on a tally with 1:50 left in the second half. She then forced a turnover and delivered the game-winner with six seconds remaining in the first overtime period for the Owls (6-1 league, 11-4 overall), who rallied from a four-goal, first-half deficit to move into a first-place tie with Episcopal Academy atop the league standings.
“The comeback proves to the girls what they are capable of,” AIS head coach Jenny Duckenfield said. “Episcopal Academy is a very good team.”
Emily Fryer delivered two goals while Natalie Pansini and Lila Barker each had a goal and an assist for the No. 6 Owls, who overcame a 5-1 hole to avenge a one-goal loss in the series earlier this year. Maria Pansini was recognized by her coaches as a standout on defense along with Kate White, Sarah Platt, Alicia O’Neil, Brynn Smith, Emma Macaione and goalie Hailey Andress (5 saves).
“Even though we were down 5-1, we knew we were going to win the game,” said Burnetta, who had three goals. “That was the difference in the game. We had faith in each other.”
Corinne Zanolli collected two goals and two assists for EA (6-1, 15-3). Taylor Lucey and Katie Crager each scored twice.
A goal by Crager, with 6:12 remaining in the second half, gave No. 5 Episcopal Academy a 6-5 lead.
But Burnetta responded with less than two minutes remaining in regulation by beating goalkeeper Sydney Gagnon with a shot to force overtime.
A turnover by Episcopal Academy on its defensive side of the field with 50 seconds remaining in the extra period set up the decisive goal. Burnetta forced the turnover and White scooped the groundball.
Barker drove towards the net, ran into a double team and flipped a pass to Burnetta, who ended the game on a high shot past Gagnon.
“Lila took a good run to the cage,” Burnetta said. “I had total faith she would score the game winner. So I decided to nudge behind the defense in case she got stopped by an extra defender.”
EA coach Josie Ferri was happy with her team’s effort.
“We knew we would have to fight until the final seconds of this game and I’m really proud of the way we played,” she said. “While the game did not end in our favor, we are ready to accept the challenge of growing from this loss and playing the rest of our games this season with even more tenacity.”
This week, Duckenfield encouraged Burnetta to drive the cage more often.
“I tell Kristin every day to utilize her speed,” the coach said. “She’s an excellent athlete.”
The senior said her inclination is to pass first. Being a good teammate often means setting up others to score, according to Burnetta.
“I did a lot of that last year,” she said. “I like setting up the other girls. But I’m starting to understand that sometimes being a good teammate means going to goal when the opportunity arises.”
Agnes Irwin 7, Episcopal Academy 6
Episcopal Academy 5-1-0 – 6
Agnes Irwin School 2-4-1 – 7
Katie Crager 2g
Corinne Zanolli 2g 1a
Taylor Lucey 2g
Sydney Gagnon 10 saves
Darby O’Grady 1dc, 1gb, 1cto
Julia Hondros 2dc
Colby Gallagher 2dc, 1gb
Lila Barker 1g, 1a
Natalie Pansini 1g, 1a
Emily Fryer 2g
Laura Pansini 1a
Kristin Burnetta 3g
Hailey Andress 5 saves