|KATE COLLINS SMYTH|
DURHAM, N.H. -
Leah Boody (Amesbury, Mass.) scored a career-high
two goals as part of a balanced attack that propelled the
University of New Hampshire field hockey team to Saturday
afternoon's 5-2 non-conference victory against the College of the
Holy Cross at Memorial Field.
UNH won its third consecutive game to improve to 4-2 overall. Holy Cross, which has lost three straight in the series vs. the Wildcats, is 1-5 this season.
Boody scored her goals in a span of 2:03 - at 21:16 and 23:19 - to transform a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 lead that the Wildcats would not relinquish. Kate Collins Smyth (Parteen, County Claire/Ireland), Whitney Frates (Woodstock, Vt.) and reigning America East Player of the Week Meg Shea (Melrose, Mass.) each recorded a goal and an assist.
UNH goalkeeper Katherine Nagengast (Westborough, Mass.) was credited with one save for the victory. Holy Cross counterpart Kelly Casey stopped three shots both halves for a total of six, while Courtney Callahan accounted for both Crusaders' goals.
The Wildcats controlled play early and generated a pair of penalty corners, but a turnover proved costly as the Crusaders scored in transition to take a 1-0 lead at 4:28. Callahan won the race to the ball at the top of the circle and placed a shot past the charging Nagengast.
In the eighth minute, UNH began to regain momentum. In a 3-on-2 rush, a shot by Hayley Rausch (Severna Park, Md.) from the top of the circle was turned aside by Casey, who came off the goal line to the middle. Rausch once again had a dangerous opportunity in the 15th minute, when her shot from the top of the circle was blocked just wide of the right post.
New Hampshire leveled the score, 1-1, with a fastbreak attack goal at 21:16. Frates carried the ball downfield and swept a pass to the top-left side of the circle, where Boody blasted a low shot into the cage.
UNH utilized another quick-strike attack to take a 2-1 lead at 23:19. Shea got behind the defense on the right wing and, with Casey charging, she pulled the ball back and centered a pass to Boody. The opportunistic Boody, alone in the middle, fired the ball into the open cage.
The ‘Cats carried that 2-1 lead and a 10-1 shot advantage into halftime.
Collins Smyth extended the advantage to 3-1 when she corralled the ball on the top-right of the circle, maneuvered to the top of the circle and swept a low, backhanded shot into the goal.
HC pulled within 3-2 at 42:53. Kara Gonnerman sent a thru-ball to Callahan, who gained control on the left side and sent a shot past the charging goalie.
UNH reestablished a two-goal advantage of 4-2 at 48:23. Boody was the push on the penalty corner and initiated the sequence with a pass to Kendall Deck (Bridgewater, N.J.), who in turn swung the ball left to Collins Smyth. Collins Smyth then drove a low ball to the right side, where Shea redirected it into the cage to extend her goal-scoring streak to six games.
Frates closed the scoring at 65:06. Casey stopped Rausch's initial shot from the right side but Frates collected the rebound in front and blasted the ball into the open cage.
New Hampshire returns to action Sept. 25 (6 p.m.) at Davidson. The Wildcats' next home game is Oct. 3 (1 p.m.) for its America East conference opener against Maine.