Dana Evans scored three goals and dished out the assist on the game-winner to lift No. 10 Mansfield field hockey team past Bloomsburg, 4-3, in a PSAC thriller at Karl Van Norman Field on Wednesday.
With the victory, the Mounties (12-5, 6-3 PSAC) clinch a spot in the PSAC tournament for the first time since 2010.
With the game locked at three in the closing minutes of regulation, Christie Buyer plucked the ball away from a defender which redirected to Evans in the heart of the circle.
Evans fired a bullet pass through a cluster of defenders to find a wide-open Olivia Wagner who beat the keeper left for the game-winner in the 56th minute.
The Huskies (6-11, 3-6 PSAC) knotted the game at three after Kriten Robinson scored in the 43rd and 47th minute to set up the electrifying finish.
After a scoreless first period Meghan Griffin weaved her way through two defenders and found a streaking Evans, who drove right and fired a shot past the right of the keeper for her first score of the night.
The Mounties’ pushed their lead to two when Alex Esterling found a wide-open Evans at the right-corner of the circle and Evans drove right and fired a goal past the left of the keeper.
The Huskies rebounded with a goal from Willow Perkins in the 32nd minute, but Evans responded 18 seconds later with a penalty-stroke goal, securing the hat trick.
Ryan made three stops in her 12th win of the year. Hannah Barnard finished with two saves for Bloomsburg.
Mansfield outshot the Huskies, 12-10 and held a 9-6 advantage in penalty corners.
After going winless in head coach Brittany Hansrote’s first season, the 2019 senior class of Evans, Griffin, Ryan, Buyer, Madison Wilinsky and Larissa Motts have led Mansfield to the most wins in a season since 2007 and are one win shy from the program record of 13 set in 2001.
The win avenges a heartbreaking 3-2 loss to the Huskies that kept the team out of the playoffs in 2018.
Mansfield remains in sole possession for fifth place in the PSAC field hockey standings, a game back of fourth-place Kutztown (7-2 PSAC).
During the loss to West Chester where the Mounties fell 7-2, Meghan Griffin and Saramae Radel scored a goal each.
The Mounties (12-6, 6-4 PSAC) wrap up the best regular season in over a decade by earning the fifth seed in the PSAC field hockey postseason and will head to the fourth seed Kutztown on Tuesday.
Mansfield is just the second team on the year to register multiple goals against the undefeated Golden Rams (17-0, 9-0 PSAC).
Brittany Ryan made 17 saves, notching the third highest single-game save total by a keeper in the conference this season.
West Chester jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the first quarter before Radel got the Mounties on the board with an unassisted goal in the 23rd minute.
The Golden Rams scored two more goals over the next nine minutes but Mansfield countered with a goal from Griffin at the 43:15 mark to cut the deficit to four. Griffin beat the keeper after settling a rebound off a shot from Claire Nielsen.
West Chester added a score in the 49th minute to round out the scoring.
Kat Roncoroni scored four goals to lead the Golden Rams offense and Claire Nielsen made two stops in net.
The Mountaineers will begin play in the PSAC tournament with a big matchup against Kutztown who they have played twice and are yet to be able to come up with a victory. The game will be Tuesday, Nov. 5.