Gophers Nearly Overtake Eagles with Three-Goal Rally

Gophers Nearly Overtake Eagles with Three-Goal Rally

HUNTINGDON, Pa. — Goucher began the day still in the hunt for one of the unclaimed spots in next month's Landmark Conference playoffs, but with each goal Juniata scored in building up a 4-0 lead over head coach Megan Williams' squad, the Gophers' chances dwindled.

Perhaps it would be more appropriate to say with each goal Sarah Bilheimer scored, since she accounted for all four. 

The Gophers, however, made a mad dash in the late stages of the contest, reducing their four-goal deficit down to 4-3 in less than 22 minutes.

Time finally ran out, ending the comeback and severely damaging Goucher's playoff hopes as the Eagles held on for a 4-3 win.

Demie Huffman (Granville, Ohio/Granville), who started in goal for the Gophers, made three saves in the second half before the Eagles (9-5, 5-1 Landmark) added to the 2-0 lead they enjoyed at the end of the first half. Bilheimer tallied her fourth goal with 21:55 remaining.

Goucher's comeback began with the Gophers cashing in on two penalty corners. One ended in a goal by Lizzie Barminski (Ventura, Calif./Buena) and on the second one, it was Maya Belin (Baltimore, Md./Maryvale Preparatory School) finding the back of the cage.

The Gophers (9-5, 2-4 Landmark) closed to within 4-3 when Barmisnki notched her second goal of the game and team-high eighth of the season with 3:06 showing on the clock.

"Our girls showed a lot of heart at the end of this game," Williams commented. "The goals we scored are a testament to our poise and our growing maturity."

Goucher welcomes Notre Dame (Md.) to Beldon Field on Tuesay at 7 p.m. for a non-conference contest.