The fans at Conway Field at Rafferty Stadium heard Mr. Brightside quite a lot this past Weds., April 3. This was thanks to Taylor Mitchell ‘19, whose goal celebration song was the hit by The Killers.
Mitchell helped lead the Stags to their 3rd conference win this season against the Manhattan Jaspers, who were unbeaten in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference until facing off against the Stags. After scoring her fourth goal, Mitchell celebrated her 100th point of her Fairfield Career with her teammates. She ended the game with five.
The Stags started off the game passing the ball very well, but the Jaspers struck first when Cassidy Burns scored just about five minutes in.
Manhattan tried to build their momentum off of scoring the first goal of the game, as Caitlin Murphy added a couple of goals and the Jaspers found themselves up 4-2 with 17 minutes and 53 seconds until halftime.
Things weren’t looking great for the Stags, as Fairfield’s Brooke Gallagher, a graduate student, had drawn a yellow card with just over 14 minutes to play in the first half.
But then Fairfield locked in, both offensively and especially defensively for the rest of the match.
Gallagher tied the game with a goal after muscling through the Jasper defense. She redeemed herself after warranting a penalty, and the game was tied at four with 10 minutes remaining in the first half.
Fairfield took the lead thanks to Mitchell’s goal with 9:31 on the clock. Mitchell wasn’t close to done, though.
She would tally four more goals, with her 4th goal of the game being her 100th point of her four year Fairfield career.
Sophomore Kelly Horning scored the last goal of the first half for the Stags, helping Fairfield close the 20 minutes on a 4-0 run.
This momentum kept going into the second half, and Manhattan ultimately had no answer to Fairfield’s persistent pressure.
The Jaspers didn’t score again, until there was 14:21 left on the scoreboard in the second half, summarizing a frustrating game for the Jaspers and lockdown defense for the Stags.
“I think we rely on our defense a lot. Even with the first goal that they had, they had 5 opportunities before they got the shot off. We were getting stops before they were getting shots off,” said head coach Laura Field.
Mitchell’s 100th point came on her 4th goal of the game at the 11:39 mark in the second half, when she received hugs from her teammates and applause from the crowd, as Mr. Brightside played loud and clear for all of Rafferty Stadium to hear.
“It was very exciting. I had no idea so that it was my 100th point so that made it better. This was a huge game so it was really special for it to happen during this game,” said Mitchell, who mentioned that she was able to be so efficient today thanks to her teammates and moving quickly.
The Stags ran away with this home matchup, securing a 14-6 win and keeping their right side of the win and loss column at 0.
“We can’t get in our heads that we’re able to let up because we’re playing some difficult teams coming up. We have to keep motivating ourselves and playing harder going forward,” said Mitchell, who noted that although the Stags are undefeated in the MAAC, it doesn’t get much easier for them from here on out.
They’ll look to keep this hot streak going in their next away game at Marist this Saturday.