Rutgers upsets No. 15 Ohio State in historic win
Great sports stories come from great moments, and for senior attacker Halley Barnes, she wrote her own moment for the Rutgers women’s lacrosse team Thursday night.
The Scarlet Knights’ captain would not be denied against No. 15 Ohio State (11-3, 2-2), scoring 6 goals, including the game-winner, in a 13-12 upset victory in overtime at High Point Solutions Stadium.
Head coach Laura Brand-Sias was not surprised by her captain stepping up at a time when her team needed her most.
“I mean, I’m not surprised,” Brand-Sias said of Barnes. “She knows that I have every confidence in her and she is someone I expect to do those things on a pretty consistent basis, so I just was waiting for her to have that game at a key moment and I’m not surprised, like I know that’s what she can do.”
For the Garnett Valley, Pennsylvania, native, she believes that she was only doing her duty as the captain of her team’s offense.
“I think that every attacker and as a leader on the field, it’s your responsibility to want the ball at the end of the game, and you need to show the rest of the team that you’re not scared to have the ball because everyone feeds off of my energy,” Barnes said.
The Knights looked more than comfortable in the first half, going toe-to-toe with the Buckeyes with neither team scoring a goal in the first 10 minutes.
That was until Rutgers’ senior attacker Kim Kolodny opened the scoring with her 27th goal of the season to take the lead against their Big Ten opponent.
The Buckeyes would answer shortly after, but a tie would not hold up for long as freshman attacker Abbey Brooks slotted her 11th goal of the season to put the Knights in front once again.
Crossing the midway point of the first half, Rutgers looked more confident and cohesive than they have all season.
“It just was awesome to finally have us pull it all together,” Brand-Sias said. “I think we’ve had glimpses of this throughout the season, and we were waiting for that full 60 minute game, and we got it tonight.”
As the Knights continued their strong play, junior midfielder Kristina Dunphey and Barnes would score back-to-back to give them a 3-goal lead.
Ohio State tried to kill Rutgers’ momentum when it cut the lead in half, but the Knights were not ready to let the Buckeyes back in it.
With less than five minutes remaining in the first half, Barnes cut through the Ohio State defense to score her 26th goal of the season, giving her 99 career points.
Despite giving up 2 quick goals to Ohio State at the end of the first half, Rutgers had a successful opening 30 minutes.
As the music blasted within High Point Solutions Stadium, the Knights emerged from their locker room break, looking to transition their success into the second half.
But it was Ohio State that came out with fire lit underneath them, scoring the game’s next 4 goals to give itself an 8-5 lead with more than 23 minutes left in the game. Ohio State’s Rainey Hodgson completed her hat trick in that span, adding another goal to bring her tally to 4 goals on the night.
Determined to not let the game slip away, Brand-Sias called a timeout for the Knights, hoping to get her team back on track.
Shortly after the timeout, Dunphey would give Rutgers some light, scoring her second goal of the game and 33rd of the season.
Caught in a back-and-forth cross fire with the Buckeyes, the Knights would allow another Ohio State goal before once again cutting their deficit to two on sophomore attacker Joanna Reilly’s 7th goal of the year.
From there, the Barnes show continued as she scored her 100th career point to put Rutgers within one before following up with career point 101 to tie the game at 9.
The Knights and Buckeyes traded goals back-and-forth multiple times as Ohio State would go into the closing minutes with a 12-11 lead.
Barnes would even the score up to extend the game into overtime before scoring to give the Knights their first Big Ten victory of the season.
Rutgers will have more than a week to celebrate its win before closing out the season against another conference opponent in Michigan next Saturday.
“I had said it 10 times before the game that I needed to have a good game today,” Barnes said. “I wanted as a senior to go out with a bang, and I haven’t been producing in the last couple games, and it really meant a lot for me to produce in a game like this and get a win.”
For updates on the Rutgers women's lacrosse team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.