Hartford, Conn. - Senior co-captain Kelcie Finn (Weymouth, Mass.) scored twice in front of 11 saves by junior goalie Lori Berger (Scottsdale, Ariz.) to lead the Trinity College Bantams to a 4-0 shutout of No. 11-ranked Amherst College on a rainy Wednesday night in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) field hockey action at Sheppard Field in Hartford. The Bantams, who honored Finn and fellow senior co-captain Cara Daly (Hamilton, Mass.) before the game as a part of senior night, finish the regular season with a 10-5 overall record and 5-5 record in league play, earning them the No. 5-seed in the NESCAC Championship Tournament where they will play at No. 4-seed Hamilton on Saturday in quarterfinals action. Amherst also wraps the regular season up with a 10-5 record and 5-5 mark in league play earning them the No. 6-seed and a date with No. 3-seed Williams in a Saturday quarterfinal game.
Both teams played a fairly even game statistically with the Mammoths winning the shot battle, 19-17, and earning 13 penalty corners to Trinity's five, but the Bantams capitalized on a pair of scoring chances in both halves, the first of which came 13:41 into the first frame. An Amherst turnover near midfield led to possession by Trinity first-year Kendall Brown (Greenwich, Conn.) who had Finn running beside her and just one Mammoth defender to beat. Brown led Finn with a beautiful pass down field where Finn deked Amherst starting goalie Emilie Flamme (Harding, N.J.), dribbled around her and put the ball into the back of the box for the 1-0 lead. Flamme finished with nine saves, including seven in the first half, to keep the visitors in it, but Berger was equally as stout on the opposite end of the field for Trinity.
Amherst had a handful of scoring opportunities in the first 35 minutes but Berger was there each time to close the door. One of the Mammoths' better chances came in the 26th minute when Elizabeth Turnbull (Harding Township, N.J.) and Emery Sorvino (New Vernon, N.J.) put back-to-back shots on goal in a scrum near the box, but Berger came up clutch, turning both attempts aside to preserve the 1-0 lead. The game remained 1-0 in favor of the Bantams until the very last play of the first half, an extended penalty corner that occurred after time had expired. Sophomore Nicole Quinlan (Duxbury, Mass.) inserted the ball which led to a shot by Finn that was blocked by Flamme. Off the first rebound, Trinity rookie Ellie Tate (Carlisle, Pa.) fired a shot on goal but Flamme scrambled to block her shot. Off of Tate's shot however, sophomore Caroline Curtin (Andover, Mass.) controlled the rebound and slapped the ball into the back of the box with Flamme out of position due to the first two saves, giving Trinity a 2-0 lead at the half.
The Bantams made it a 3-0 game at the 57:18 mark when Finn backed the ball into Amherst's zone and spun off a defender while wrapping the ball past Flamme for her second goal of the game. Anna Agathis (Bedminster, N.J.) tried to get Amherst on the board with 15 minutes left to play as she ripped a shot towards the corner of the goal, but Berger laid out, full-extension to deflect the ball out of bounds into the corner. Two minutes later, Trinity put a stranglehold on the game when Quinlan inserted a corner to Curtin who set it for junior forward Chandler Solimine (Pelham, N.Y.) who sent a frozen rope into the top shelf of the box to make it a 4-0 advantage which would stand as the final score.
Junior defender Madison Guiffre (Wellesley, Mass.) and junior midfielder Alison Slowe (Medfield, Mass.) came up huge in multiple spots on defense, making strong plays to keep Amherst from ever gaining momentum on offense. With seven minutes to play, Mammoth junior Kendall Codey (Summit, N.J.) fired a shot destined for goal, but Guiffre gave up her body and blocked the ball with her back to preserve the shutout. Berger went on to make a pair of saves in the waning minutes to finish with her fourth shutout of the fall.