|VIDEO: Oak Knoll's overtime goal sinks West Essex|
Outplayed for much of regulation, Oak Knoll scored with less than three minutes left to force overtime in its Top 5 field hockey showdown with West Essex. Then late in OT, Bridget Murphy's goal gave the Royals a thrilling victory.
Murphy scored following a corner with just over two minutes left in the extra session. Her first shot was saved by West Essex goalie Tara Smith, but Gabby Andretta got the ball back to Murphy, whose second attempt just squeezed through.
Oak Knoll wouldn't have made it to overtime without the efforts of Ali McCarthy and Jordan McGinley. McCarthy set up the Royals' first goal, and scored the second on a breakaway with just over two minutes left in the second half.
McGinley, the Royals' goalie, made 14 saves in the contest and kept her team close even though West Essex had many more scoring chances in regulation.
Emma Mueller scored the first goal for Oak Knoll.
Julia Russo recorded both goals for West Essex, both coming off corners. Still, the Knights did not fully take advantage of their 19-7 edge in corners in the contest.
Julia Vardiman and Jamie Chebuske had assists for West Essex. Smith recorded 13 saves.
It's the first loss of the season for the Knights, who are now 11-1.
Oak Knoll, which suffered losses to #1 Eastern and highly-ranked Ocean City, improves to 11-2.
For sports video highlights of this New Jersey high school girls' field hockey game, click play in the box at left.