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Courtesy: CAA
NU's Crystal Poland

Northeastern Tops JMU 3-2 in CAA Championship Semifinal

Courtesy: CAA
          Release: 11/03/2012
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PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (November 3, 2012) - Second-seeded Northeastern scored the game-winning goal in the 65th minute to defeat third-seeded James Madison 3-2 in game two of the CAA Field Hockey Championship semifinals. The Huskies will face top-seeded Drexel tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 p.m. in the title game.

Northeastern (14-5, 5-2 CAA) collected goals from senior forward Nicky Graham and junior Lindsay Bennett, while CAA Player of the Year Crystal Poland picked up an assist. Senior midfielder Jenna Taylor and redshirt-junior forward Rachel Wein led the way for JMU (14-5, 5-2 CAA) with a goal each.  

Both teams opened up the scoring early as Northeastern scored first with a goal from Bennett in the third minute. Bennett controlled a long pass from midfielder Caroline Judge and tapped the ball into the lower left corner of the goal.

JMU answered just four minutes later with a goal from Taylor to tie the score at 1-1. Taylor cut through the Huskies' defense deep near the goal and shot the ball under senior goalkeeper Lizzie Priest's pads to put JMU on the board.

Following numerous offensive chances for both teams, the Huskies took a 2-1 halftime lead following a JMU own-goal in the 25th minute. Judge launched a cross from the left side of the arc which hit JMU's freshman goalkeeper Lena Wimmert's leg and bounced into the cage.

In the second half, the Dukes tied the game at 2-2 off a goal from Wein in the 58th minute. Wein was able to get deep into the Huskies' defense and shot the ball just under a diving Priest for her second goal of the championship.

The Dukes' defense was able to stop the potent Husky offense through seven penalty corners, but the Huskies secured the game-winning goal from Graham off their eighth PC in the 65th minute. Graham collected a pass from Poland after a fake shot and knocked it into the middle of the goal. The Northeastern defense held on for the final five minutes of play to seal the 3-2 victory and advance to the championship game for the second straight season and the third time since joining the CAA in 2005.