COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – Goals from Maria Guarisco and Sarah Schannauer, as well as a career-high five saves from goalkeeper Ilianna Santangelo drove the No. 6 Franklin & Marshall field hockey team to a key 2-0 shutout of Centennial Conference (CC) rival Ursinus, the nation's No. 7 team, on Saturday afternoon.
The win was the first over the Bears, who won all three games a season ago, since 2013 and improved the Diplomats to 6-2, 2-0 CC, while Ursinus fell to 5-2, 1-1 CC.
In a matchup featuring two of the conference's premier forwards in F&M's Guarisco and the Bears' Megan Keenan, it was the Diplomats' reigning All-American that gave her team an early lead, tallying an unassisted goal just 10 minutes in for the 1-0 score.
Despite trailing in shots by a 7-4 margin after the opening 35 minutes of play, the Diplomats entered halftime holding on to the one-goal advantage. A pair of shots and a penalty corner in the opening five minutes of the second put the momentum on F&M's side, with the Diplomats' offense once again capitalizing on their opportunities in the 62nd minute.
Schannauer lined up for a corner that made its way to Bridget Falcone, who got the ball back to Schannauer for a deflection that found the back of the cage for some late insurance and a 2-0 lead.
Ursinus finished the contest with five corners in the final six minutes of action, however the Diplomats' defense held strong for their fourth shutout of the season. Santangelo (2-1) played lights out with a four saves in the first and three in the second to earn the win, while the Bears' Danielle DeSpirito (5-2) was charged with the loss after allowing both goals and registering four saves.
Shots belonged to Ursinus at 13-9 and penalty corners by a 13-5 margin. Audrey Buckman, Melanie Consiglio and Guarisco all notched a pair of shots, while the Bears' Keenan recorded five shots, with only a pair reaching Santangelo.
CC competition continues for F&M on Wednesday when McDaniel heads to Lancaster for a 7:00 p.m. matchup.