The Endicott field hockey prevailed against the University of New England in thrilling fashion to take home the team’s first conference title since 2012.
The Gulls controlled the tempo from the start and outshot the Nor’easters 26-7 throughout the contest. Julie Champigny played the role of the hero as her clutch tally put the Gulls up 1-0 with just over six minutes remaining. Sophomore goaltender Taylor Farrin was also sharp with three key saves on the day including her timely stop with just seconds remaining to secure the victory.
The victory gave head coach Jodi Cipolla her third conference championship in the past eight seasons. During her time at the helm, she is also a three-time CCC Coach of the Year and has appeared in three Division III tournaments.
Lots of the Gull’s success this season relied on a versatile barrage of scoring on the offensive end. Four players reached double figures in goals and two players went as far to eclipse 20 or more goals on the season.
The team’s leading scorer this season was junior Kristen McCarthy. The forward found the back of the net 29 times to go along with 17 helpers in her 21 games suiting up for the Gulls. McCarthy performed heavily in clutch time with four game winners on the year, tied for most on the team.
McCarthy transferred to Endicott last January and despite her individual success on the field, she is extremely appreciative of the upperclassmen who helped pave the way for the team’s success.
“They’re natural leaders who are easily approachable if we ever need them. Our team would not nearly be half of what it is today…There’s no greater feeling than seeing your seniors cry tears of joy over an accomplishment that they’ve worked four years for,” said McCarthy.
Another strong contributor to the team was defenseman Cameron Molinare as the senior’s point total has increased in each of the past three seasons. Her leadership is key on and off the field for the Gulls and her reliability shows as she’s dressed in every game for the past two seasons.
Winning the CCC Championship has been the priority for Molinare and the team dating back to the opening game at Wheaton. Since then, the Gulls have secured eight shutout wins and have notched almost five goals per contest. Their performance in the championship game delivered as advertised and when the clock hit double zeros, Molinare couldn’t help expressing her emotions.
“We wanted to win for each other as much as we wanted to win for ourselves… the second that final whistle blew and we knew we had won--yeah that is a feeling I will never forget,” said Molinare.
The Gulls flew high this season finishing with 17 wins, including nine at home for the Endicott faithful. None were more important than last Saturdays as the team’s hard work and perseverance finally paid off. The Gulls will host Saint Joseph’s today at North Field beginning at 6 P.M. for the program’s first home game in NCAA tournament history.