Shauna Sellenger (Londonderry, N.H.) recorded a goal and an assist and Sophie Ostroski (Intervale, N.H.) tallied two assists to lead the University of New Hampshire field hockey team to Sunday afternoon’s 3-1 non-conference victory against St. Louis University at Memorial Field.

UNH (1-0) ended a streak of six consecutive losses in season openers, improved its lifetime record vs. St. Louis to 4-0 and is now 20-8-2 in home openers. The Billikens, who lost 3-0 to the University of Vermont at UNH’s Memorial Field on Saturday, is now 0-2 this season.

New Hampshire controlled play in the opening 20 minutes of play and took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Megan Shea (Melrose, Mass.), a 2006 America East All-Rookie Team selection, at 18:43. The scoring sequence began on a penalty corner with a Sarah Craigue (Concord, N.H) push to the top of the circle, where Sellenger made the stop and passed the ball to the left wing for Ostroski. Her shot was then redirected by Shea into the cage; it marked Ostroski’s first career assist.

Play leveled in the last 15 minutes of the half as SLU began to generate dangerous scoring chances. Kelsey Shultz was turned aside by UNH goalkeeper Margaux Shute (Norridgewock, Maine) with 6:30 on the clock, then Mary Henry’s shot off the ensuing corner was blocked aside by UNH’s defense. Moments later, Shute denied Jacklyn McGranahan and then charged to poke check the ball away from Alex Weber.

UNH started strong again – this time at the outset of the second half – and scored goals 81 seconds apart to build a 3-0 lead. A penalty corner produced the Wildcats’ second goal at 45:10 when Brooke Bercari (Bordentown, N.J.) scored from the top of the circle. Sellenger and Craig, with the stop and push, respectively, were credited with assists.

Sellenger gave the Wildcats a 3-0 advantage at 46:31. Ostroski drove along the left endline and fired a centering pass just outside the goalmouth that Sellenger redirected into the open cage.

St. Louis head coach Marcie Boyer (UNH ’93), who last year guided the Billikens to their best winning percentage since 1991, called time out at that point and her team trimmed the deficit to 3-1 at 50:03. Christine Frampus gathered control of a loose ball on the right wing and slid a crossing pass to Schultz, who scored into the open near side.

Moments later, SLU goalkeeper Amy Wasserman kept the difference at two goals by making a strong right legpad save that sent Craigue’s shot from the top of the circle just wide of the left post.

The Billikens responded with pressure at the other end of the field. Catherine Donovan was denied in front, then Emily Kassab’s shot off the rebound bounded wide right of the cage. SLU quickly regained possession but once again Shute turned aside Donovan to preserve the 3-1 advantage.

UNH head coach Robin Balducci (UNH ’85), the program’s winningest head coach with 149 career victories, called time out soon thereafter and the ‘Cats regained control to secure the victory.

Shute finished with eight saves in the Wildcats’ goal and Wasserman stopped seven shots defending the Billikens' cage.

UNH recorded a 16-13 shot advantage (7-6 in the first half) as well as a 6-4 edge in corners (4-3 in the first half).

New Hampshire returns to action at home Aug. 31 against Colgate University. Game time at Memorial Field is 7 p.m.
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