Women's soccer: Orange loses early lead, rallies to win in Double OT

Alex Lamontagne's goal in the 102nd minute downs Vermont.

When Stephanie Skilton buried her own rebound in the 15th minute of play Sunday, Syracuse took a two-goal lead and looked to be in cruise control.

But Vermont had no intention of going away quietly.

The Catamounts survived relentless offensive pressure by the Orange and tied the match with five minutes left in regulation. However, SU freshman Alex Lamontagne delivered the final blow with a breakaway goal in the second overtime session to help the Orange escape Hamilton, N.Y., with a 3-2 victory in the Colgate Nike Classic.

"Obviously our finishing leaves something to be desired," SU head coach Phil Wheddon said. "It's a product of our own environment. We allowed them in the game."

Just two days after Wheddon challenged the Orange to come out firing on all cylinders, it did. Maya Pitts opened the scoring 8:59 into the match, and Skilton soon followed.

Syracuse (3-1-2) dominated Vermont throughout the game, outshooting the Catamounts 30-8 in total and 7-0 in extra time. But it repeatedly squandered chances to put the game out of reach.

Lamontagne and Skilton were repeatedly denied by Vermont goalkeeper Ally Ramos in the second half, and Maddie Damm struck the left post with a shot in the 49th minute.

Meanwhile, Vermont (2-3-0) answered with a screened shot by Sarah Martin and an arcing volley from Jessica Silverman that both eluded SU goalie MacKenzie Moranz.

Finally in the second overtime period, SU took advantage of a Vermont miscue. Sophomore defender Sierra Rhoads severely misplayed a reset pass, and Lamontagne was there to snatch the ball away. She dribbled into the box and ripped a bullet to the right corner of the cage.

The goal was the first game-winner of Lamontagne's career.

"(Lamontagne) is an athletic specimen," Wheddon said. "She's dangerous, competitive... she's everything you want out of a forward."

The win comes only one day after senior Hanna Strong was indefinitely suspended from the team after a video posted to Instagram showed her using racial and homophobic slurs.

Syracuse players were not available for comment following the match, and Wheddon dodged any questions related to the situation. His only concern on Sunday was the continued offensive struggles of his squad.

"We could have, and probably should have, saved ourselves 20 minutes of play," he said. "We've got to be more clinical for sure."

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