With less than 15 seconds remaining, all of Bedford Field watched a tipped ball bounce high over the head of Princeton goalkeeper Christina Maida and head into the Tiger goal for a stunning, game-tying goal. But Princeton showed a championship level of resolve by bouncing back and scoring a 2-1 overtime victory.
Teresa Benvenuti took a centering pass from Allison Evans 12:30 into the first overtime session and buried the game winner to hand the third-ranked Princeton Tigers a 2-1 victory over a gritty Michigan State squad.
It was the third goal of the season for Benvenuti, and it ended a dramatic overtime period that was forced in even more dramatic fashion.
Princeton led 1-0 after Michelle Cesan tipped a pass from Amanda Bird on a penalty corner 7:53 into the game. The score would stay that way for another 61 minutes and change, but a game that seemed destined for a 1-0 victory changed when the Spartans attempted one final, furious rally. Victoria Radwell sent a hard drive up the center of the field, and Simone Vagnani was able to get her stick on it before Maida could knock it away.
The tip went way in the air and kept heading towards the cage. Maida attempted one more save, but her swing at the ball just missed. Seconds later, the Spartans bench erupted in jubilation.
Meanwhile, Princeton regrouped. After outshooting Michigan State 19-5 and owning a 13-0 edge in penalty corners, the Tigers were not about to let this game get away. Outside of one transition that nearly ended in a Spartan goal, the Tigers regained control and managed three shots in overtime.
The third would be the winner, and it sends Princeton into a Sunday showdown with Penn State with a perfect 3-0 record.