Senior Tesa McKibben returned home this past Saturday and led her St. Franics Red Flash to a 2-1 double overtime victory against Bucknell at Emmitt Field at Holmes Stadium in Lewisburg.
McKibben, a Montoursville graduate, scored the game-tying goal from about 15 yards away with 7 minutes remaining in regulation to force overtime.
After a scoreless first overtime period, McKibben struck again. The St. Francis all-time leading goal scorer connected with a header, assisted from Korrin Hackenberg and Casey Gallaher, to give St. Francis the victory with seconds remaining. The deciding goal was McKibben's 19th career game-winning goal.
"What she does on the field, everybody admires her," St. Francis coach Brenda van Stralen said. "Teammates, opponents, they all admire what she is doing so she has to have respect. She's great and I see that with some of our players... they get better when they play with her and that's the best part."
The Red Flash are 3-2-1 after their win over the Bison on Saturday and will try reach the NEC playoffs for a fourth consecutive season this year - the final one for McKibben, who scored her fourth and fifth goals of the season on Saturday.
Before the 2013 season began, McKibben was selected as a MAC Herman Trophy candidate, which is given to the national player of the year. She is the NCAA active leading scorer with 140 points and is the first player in NEC history to win player of the year three times. Despite all her individual accolades, McKibben's focus remains on those around her.
"To me, team means everything," McKibben said. "I wouldn't be where I am in my career without these girls or this coaching staff."
McKibben also receives strong support off the field and that was evident on Saturday in Lewisburg as a section of the stands was filled with family and friends that made the short drive from Montoursville.
"The support that I received at the game was so incredible and so humbling," McKibben said. "The feeling of returning home in my last collegiate season and getting an overtime win is impossible to put into words. I just want to say thank you to everyone that came to the game and supported SFU. I don't believe we would have gotten that win without them."
McKibben currently holds the St. Francis records for goals in a year (19), goals in a career (55), total points in a career (140) and total points in a year (49).
The Red Flash return to action on Friday night at Delaware.