NAC champions – again!

With only 9.1 seconds left in regulation, and the score knotted up at 9-9 the Castleton Spartans women's lacrosse team pushed the ball in transition to find a goal from freshman Grace Johnson just before the sound of the buzzer.
The Spartans stormed the field to celebrate their third consecutive North Atlantic Conference championship.
Castleton has never lost a game in conference history, although Thomas held them to the closest game in NAC history.
Maddy DaCosta opened up the scoring for the Spartans with a nifty finish, from an even more beautiful feed from Blake Wardwell. Castleton continued their rally with goals from Brandi Whittemore and a free possession strike from Sarah Clark.
Thomas then pushed the ball in transition to find a goal from Britanny Premo with just 11:06 remaining in the first half.
Despite the goal Castleton continued to find the back of the net with a free possession shot from Kate Auer. Whittemore then stuck one of her three goals with a roll to finish off the stick of Auer to make it 5-1.
Castleton appeared to be running away with the game, although that was not the case.
Thomas made their presence known going on a 3-1 run paced by two goals from Jennifer Day to cut the Spartan lead to 6-4.
Kim Gosselin then established great vision to find Blake Wardwell for a goal to put the Spartans up 7-4 heading into halftime.
Thomas goaltender Allie McCarthy started the second half brilliant, stopping countless shots to keep the game scoreless until 16:56 left in the first half.
Premo, and Day used the momentum from their goalkeeper to find the back of the net, and make it 7-6 and bring the game within one.
DeCosta and Auer each netted goals to give the Spartans  a comfortable 9-6 lead.
However, the Spartans didn't get too comfortable as Thomas scored three goals highlighted with two strikes from Jennifer Day, and just like that the Spartans found themselves in a 9-9 ball game.
After a Thomas turnover, and 9.1 seconds left on the clock Tiffany Danyow cleared the ball finding Gosselin, who then threw a bomb down field to Grace Johnson, and scored with no time remaining on the clock to give the Spartans the victory.
Johnson couldn't have been more excited to net the game winner for her team.     
"It felt so great to score the goal, I'm still in shock the buzzer didn't go off," she said.
Johnson was not the only one excited about the goal. Whittemore was ecstatic, and has a positive outlook on the postseason.
"I was so proud of Grace, we just have to stay positive, play our game, and have fun," she said.
Whittemore was also impressive, pacing the Spartan offense with three goals.
Coach Hannah Corkery was poised to go undefeated, and win the NAC championship in her first season at the helm of the Spartans.
Corkery and the Spartans now look to tackle the NCAA tournament.
"We are a team to be taken very seriously, and I've known that from the beginning. I think we'll do very well," she said.


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