Greenville, S.C. – SoCon Freshman of the Year Hailey Rhatigan scored with 1:40 to go in overtime to give Mercer the 15-14 SoCon Championship victory. In a heartbreaker for the Paladins, Furman's season ended at 11-8.
Furman was led by senior Abby Shields with five points (3 goals, 2 assists), while all-tournament selection Hannah Demis finished with four points (2 goals, 2 assists). Hannah Feinberg, Grace Pollak and Kyra LaMotte each tallied two goals, while Sophie Brennan, Sydney Catts, and Isabelle Walsh each added one. All-Tournament selection Courtney Baker made 12 saves on the day.
Grace Pollak gave the Paladins a 1-0 lead just over 1:00 into the game, but Mercer responded with back-to-back goals to take a 2-1 advantage. Furman then battled back with two-straight scores to take a 3-2 lead, forcing the Bears to take a timeout with 20:43 to go in the half. The Bears responded with back-to-back goals of their own to regain the one-goal lead at 4-3, forcing the Paladins to take a timeout with 14:50 to go in the half. Mercer pushed the lead to 5-3, before Abby Shields netted a free-position attempt to cut the lead to one. The Bears used a free-position shot to push the lead back to 6-4, before Kyra LaMotte netted back-to-back free position shots to tie the game at 6 with 8:40 to go in the half.
Sydney Catts tied the game at eight to open the second half with the Paladins' fifth free-position of the game, before Hannah Feinberg scored to give the Paladins a 9-8 lead with 27:11 to go. The Bears scored back-to-back goals to regain the lead at 10-9, before Abby Shields netted her third goal of the day to tie the game at 10 with 23:28 to go.
The teams traded goals, then went nearly 12:00 without scoring before combining for three goals in 1:30, as Mercer took a 13-12 lead with 6:56 to go. Furman's Ally Schnetzka intercepted a pass on the Mercer offensive end, allowing the Paladins to call a timeout with just under 5:30 to go, trailing by one, but the Paladins could not capitalize, as Mercer scored with 4:00 remaining to take a 14-12 lead.
Grace Pollak fired a shot on a pass from Abby Shields to cut the lead to one with 3:16 to go, before Isabelle Walsh netted her first goal of the day to tie it at 14 with 2:40 on the clock. The Paladins had the chance for a lead, but couldn't put the ball in the net, as Mercer came down the field and drew a foul for a free-position attempt with three seconds to go. Courtney Baker made her 11th save of the day, however, to send the game to overtime.
Neither team scored in the first 3:00 overtime period, but Hailey Rhatigan took a pass from Catie Snee on a fast break to score with 1:41 remaining in the second 3:00 overtime period giving the Bears the sudden-death, overtime victory.