Bison Field Hockey Opens the Season on the Road

Brooke Tracey, Contributing Writer

The Bison field hockey team opened up its 2022 season this past weekend, facing No. 9 Louisville on Friday, Aug. 26 and James Madison University on Sunday, Aug. 28.

While both were very contested matches, the Orange and Blue could not quite outscore their opponents. The Bison leave opening weekend 0-2, but the future looks promising.

The Bison traveled to University Park, Pa., on Friday to face the Louisville Cardinals at Penn State. The Orange and Blue came out strong from the opening whistle, but conceded a goal just over seven minutes into the match. The score remained 0–1 throughout the remainder of the first half, as the Bison continued to attack the Cardinal defense. In the 37th minute, Patriot League Preseason Offensive Player of the Year Lily Neilson ’25 notched a goal, evening the score 1–1. The Bison remained in the game until the fourth quarter, when the Cardinals secured their victory with a second goal. Despite the 2–1 defeat, both teams had 11 shots apiece, with goalkeeper Clara McCormick ’23 coming up big with seven saves.

Key contributor to the Bison defense, Mia Fields ’24, was very satisfied with the way the team performed.

“It was really exciting to come out in [their] first game of the season and give the 9th ranked team in the country a run for their money,” Fields said. She added how the team has proven that they “can compete at the highest level,” and looks forward to what the rest of the season has to hold. 

The Orange and Blue returned to the pitch on Sunday to face the James Madison Dukes in Harrisburg, VA. The Dukes came out on fire, scoring off a corner just four minutes into the game. While the Bison continued to fight, James Madison tallied another three goals in the second quarter. Kari Melberger ’24 was able to lessen the Dukes lead to 4–1 after netting a goal less than a minute after conceding. Coming out of half time, the Orange and Blue gained momentum, scoring the only goal of the third quarter courtesy of Neilson. McCormick made four big saves during the quarter to keep the Dukes off the board; however, they found the net two more times in the fourth quarter. The final score was 6-2 in favor of the Dukes.

Despite the losses, this Bison team remains very strong. They are looking ahead to their next match at Kent State on Sunday,  Sept. 4, which is set for a 12 p.m. start.

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