CORTLAND, N.Y. – Liz Athing (Bay Shore), Dani Barto (Nichols/Tioga Central) and Megan O'Brien (Carmel) each scored goals as nationally 20th-ranked Cortland defeated Geneseo, 3-0, in the SUNYAC field hockey tournament semifinals.
Cortland (16-3) won its 11th straight game, including the last four by shutout. Kailynne Reinoehl (Lititz, PA/Warwick) recorded three saves as Cortland avenged a 5-0 regular-season loss to the Knights.
The top-seeded Red Dragons will host third-seeded New Paltz, a 2-1 winner at Oneonta, in the conference championship game Saturday at 1 p.m., with the winner earning an NCAA Division III tournament automatic berth. Cortland will be making its sixth SUNYAC finals appearance since the league began conducting a postseason tournament in 2010.
Athing opened the scoring just under 10 minutes into the contest. Anna Branch (Clifton Park/Shenendehowa) sent a ball toward the cage and Athing tapped it in near the left post for her fifth goal of the fall. Cortland pushed the lead to 2-0 with 4:06 left in the half. Shannon McGuinness (Carle Place) sent a long pass into the left side of the circle. Barto hit a crossing ball that deflected off the leg of a Geneseo defender, redirected left and went into the cage for her third goal of the season.
Cortland closed the scoring 3:31 into the second half. Geneseo goalie Mia Ludwig made a save, but O'Brien controlled the rebound and knocked the ball into the empty cage to pick up her eighth goal of the season. Ludwig finished with four saves for the Knights and Kelly McKeveny added a defensive save.
Reinoehl made two of her three saves in the second half. She turned aside a hard shot by Sarah Armbrust with 1:10 remaining to preserve the shutout.
Cortland 3, Geneseo 0
Scoring Summary (Goals-Assists):
Geneseo: no scoring
Cortland: Liz Athing 1-0, Dani Barto 1-0, Megan O'Brien 1-0, Anna Branch 0-1, Shannon McGuinness 0-1
Halftime: Cortland 2, Geneseo 0
Shots: Cortland 13, Geneseo 8
Penalty Corners: Cortland 12, Geneseo 7
Saves: Mia Ludwig (Geneseo) 4 (3 GA in 70:00); Kailynne Reinoehl (Cortland) 3 (0 GA in 70:00)
Record after game: Geneseo (Knights) 10-8; Cortland (Red Dragons) 16-3 (ranked 20th nationally in Div. III)