FIELD HOCKEY FELLED 4-0 BY #15 AMERICAN IN SEASON OPENER

MEG SHEA
Box Score

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The 15th-ranked American University field hockey team scored three goals in an eight-minute span of the second half to break open a close game en route to a 4-0 victory against the University of New Hampshire in the season opener for both teams Saturday at William I Jacobs Recreational Complex.

“The end result does not reflect the quality of effort by our team for most of the game,” 18th-year UNH head coach Robin Balducci said. “We played a good, quality tactical game in the first half and the first 20 minutes of the second half. We just struggled a little in the latter half of the game.”

The Eagles took a 1-0 lead at 7:31 when Christine Fingerhuth scored with the assistance of Irene Schickhardt (1g, 2a). American took that 1-0 lead and a 9-3 shot advantage, as well as a 4-1 edge in penalty corners, into halftime.

“We had a couple of scoring opportunities in the first half that went just off the end line, and you have to capitalize on those against a team like American,” Balducci said.

Emily Stovicek, off a crossing pass from Schickhardt, extended the lead to 2-0 at 58:01, then Shickhardt tallied an unassisted goal at 62:09 and Natalie Ellenberger closed the flurry at 66:00.

UNH freshman goalkeeper Jenna Lehmann (Kingston, Pa.) had an impressive collegiate debut and finished with five saves. Fellow rookies Kendall Deck (Bridgewater, N.J.), Kate Collins Smyth (Parteen, County Claire, Ireland) and Hayley Rausch (Severna Park, Md.) were also in the starting lineup for the Wildcats.

New Hampshire’s offense was led by junior Meg Shea (Melrose, Mass.) and senior Sarah Craigue (Concord, N.H.), who accounted for all five of the team’s shots with three and two, respectively.

American goalie Alyssa Poorman made three saves to record the shutout. The Eagles finished the game with an 18-5 shot advantage and a 7-2 edge in corners.

UNH returns to action Aug. 31 (12 p.m.) against Radford at the William I Jacobs Recreational Complex. The Wildcats’ home opener is Sept. 5 against Brown University. Game time at Memorial Field is 2 p.m.
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