Marissa Balleza scored both of Harvard's goals Thursday (Gil Talbot).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – For the third time in as many games, Harvard field hockey (2-1) found itself in an overtime battle, this time against visiting Pacific (0-3). On Thursday night at the 87:38 mark on Berylson Field, senior Marissa Balleza notched her second goal of the contest to give the Crimson a 2-1 victory.
In the early minutes of the second extra period, the Crimson offense quickly turned the field and were rushing at the Pacific goal. Emily Duarte fielded a pass in the center of the pitch before hitting Balleza to her right. The veteran forward made a quick move on the defense and then fired a shot over the Tigers goaltender into the top of the cage.
The game-winning goal was the second of the night for Balleza, who tied the match 10 minutes into the second half when she laced a penalty shot into the top of the cage. The goals were the first of the season for Balleza, who now has 36 career tallies, seven shy of the program record. The penalty shot was award to the Crimson after Kathleen Young was tackled inside the circle attacking the Pacific cage.
The equalizer was needed after Pacific took the lead in the first half on Rylee Comeau's second goal of the year. Comeau forced a turnover at the top of the circle and finished the solo effort with a shot into the side of the cage. The shot proved to be the only one on net for Pacific during regulation, as both of Olivia Startup's saves in goal for Harvard came in extra time. Laura Pujade finished with six saves for Pacific.
The Harvard offense doubled up Pacific in shots, 16-8, while the Crimson also posted a 7-3 advantage in penalty corners.
Harvard's next opponent is No. 4 Connecticut, which it will take on Sunday in Storrs, Connecticut at 1 p.m.