After a heartbreaking loss to Columbia University, Fairfield University Women’s Lacrosse did not panic going into their game facing Hofstra University on Saturday, Feb. 24. After two straight losses with a one goal difference, the Stags knew to stay positive going forward. Fairfield never submitted to Hofstra’s relenting offense, which allowed the Stags to win in overtime.
At one point during the first half, the Pride was up 4-0 on the Stags, but Fairfield clawed their way back to an 8-6 lead by the end of the half. Hofstra had 19 shots, 14 on goal, while the Stags had 14 shots, 10 on goal, in the opening half. For Fairfield, Paulina DiFatta ‘20 made eight saves in just the first half to help keep Hofstra at bay. She performed even better in the second half, earning 10 more saves and tallying 18 total saves, as compared to Maddie Fields ‘20 from Hofstra only making five. This feat ties DiFatta for the most saves in the nation in a winning effort this year.
Offense was present for both teams, especially from the Stags. Fairfield recorded 18 shots on goal for the entire game, which equates to about a 72 percent success rate while Hofstra recorded 30 shots on goal for the whole match, which equals a 40 percent success rate. The Stags used more precision with their attacks and it paid off dividends.
Senior Brenna Connolly registered a four-goal effort on Saturday which led the team as Jillian Winwood ‘21 also recorded four goals in the matchup. Connolly, an attacker, and Winwood, a midfielder, were thorns in Hofstra’s side all game, but especially at the conclusion of the game. Winwood sent the game into overtime with a buzzer-beater goal at the end of regulation which gave Fairfield unexpected momentum. In the overtime period, Connolly struck home her fourth and final goal to secure the win. Senior Olivia Russell also added in a hat trick as Fairfield got 11 goals from three scorers in this game.
After this thrilling win, Fairfield University Women’s Lacrosse looks to stay on the road for their next three games. The Stags will face Sacred Heart University, University of New Hampshire and Lehigh University in that order. Fairfield looks to go 3-2 when they face off at Sacred Heart on Wednesday, Feb. 28 at 3 p.m. at Campus Field in Fairfield, CT.