Field Hockey faces Princeton and California, split weekend 1-1

Maddie Liota, Contributing Writer

The women’s field hockey team had a busy weekend, with games against Princeton and California. The Orange and Blue played Princeton first on Sept. 12, in a tough 5-1 loss after a trying game. Luckily, the tide shifted for the Bison when they played California and prevailed 2-1 on Sept. 13.

The game against Princeton was a hard-fought competition for the Orange and Blue. Princeton scored two points in the first 20 minutes of the game, and followed up the second point with a hard drive toward the Bison goalkeeper. They were held at bay though, and Anna Wills ’17 battled her Princeton counterpart in order to protect the Bison goal. Soon after this, the Tigers scored their third point. The Bison had several forwards challenge the Tiger defense, in an effort to score a point before halftime. Despite their loss, the Bison showed true perseverance in their teamwork and ability to hold Princeton to five goals.

The second half started with the Princeton offense making several hard drives toward the Bison goal. The Orange and Blue were quickly awarded a penalty corner, and Kayla Sullivan ’16 successfully scored the first point for the Bison. Afterwards the field was full of action as the ball rapidly changed hands between the Bison and the Tigers. M.C. Evans ’19 repeatedly blocked a Princeton offensive player from making a drive toward the Bison home. Throughout all of this, Princeton’s defense held strong against the Orange and Blue’s offense. Princeton scored their fifth point with six minutes left before the final, cornering the Bison goalkeeper. Emma Fitzgerald ’17 held off many Princeton players, showing dexterity and great technique. The game was a tough fight.

“We seemed a little disconnected, both from the game and from each other, but it was a good lesson that we need to come out mentally prepared and stay plugged in for the entire game,” Wills said.

The game against California was also a hard-fought battle.

“We were much stronger with our outletting and our forwards were explosive off of the ball. Even though the score was close, we definitely feel we outplayed them for the majority of the game,” Kelsy Kauffman ’17 said.

The first point was scored by California, well into the game. This did not discourage the Bison, who answered quickly and scored the first point in a two-person tag team. Wills was able to break through the California defense and pass to Emily Hitchings ’16, who then drove the ball straight past the goalkeeper. Most of the game was controlled by the Bison, with a few tight moments interspersed. The Bison scored their final point in the last five minutes of the game, managing to keep possession of the ball. 

“They’re a really good team, so it was awesome to come away with a hard-fought win,” Kauffman said. 

“The whole weekend was a great learning experience. Looking back on this season at the end, we’ll be able to pinpoint the transition from Saturday to Sunday as the turning point,” Wills said. 

The Bison have two games ahead in a tough weekend on the road: Delaware on Sept. 18 and Albany two days later on Sept. 20.

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