The UNH field hockey team (5-4) continued their hot stretch in Providence, RI against Bryant last Friday, as they took the 4-0 win.
UNH quickly got going, as they scored in the second minute of the game. The goal came from first-year forward Ava Mariana off an intercepted pass. UNH dominated the rest of the quarter, putting a total of six shots on net and allowed none on their own.
Midway through the second quarter, Bryant had a good chance at a goal, but it rolled just wide. UNH would win the shot battle 4-1 in the first quarter, but Bryant applied pressure of their own, which led to promising scoring chances. At halftime, the game was still 1-0 in favor of UNH.
The ‘Cats came out hot in the second half, scoring in the opening minute off a corner. The goal came from standout sophomore forward Finn Caron, as she swept it in off the rebound.
After another near miss by Bryant on a corner, UNH was able to move it down the field and score in the fourth minute of the quarter. This goal came off the stick of junior midfielder Bloem Van Brekel.
In the fourth quarter, UNH initiated the scoring by sweeping a shot into the net five minutes into the period. Although UNH had scoring success, Bryant put the pressure on, winning the shot total in the last frame.
UNH took the shutout win with a final score of 4-0, and with that win, the ‘Cats moved their win streak to five. This feat helped their moral, as they prepared for Harvard on Sunday. Head coach Robin Balducci attributed the win to sticking to the game plan and playing as a team.
When asked about how the team has had so much success in recent weeks, Balducci accredited it to the tough opponents they have played to start the season, which has prepared them for their last four games.
On Sunday UNH would go down to Cambridge, Massachusetts to take on the #16 ranked Harvard Crimson. This game was one of their biggest tests of the season against a physical team.
As usual, UNH opened the scoring chances, as they generated a shot just wide of the cage three minutes into the game. Midway through the quarter, UNH would generate another scoring chance from Brekel, only to see the sequence end in a Harvard Goal. After eight minutes, Harvard lead 1-0.
In the second quarter, UNH kept it close by playing some quality defense and a couple of key saves by first-year goalkeeper Jemma Woods.
UNH would manage to make it midway through the third before seemingly falling apart. Harvard would score two goals with only one minute separating them, which put them up 3-0.
Later in the game, the Crimson would tally two more goals deep into the fourth quarter to put the final score at 5-0.
Coach Balducci stated that they “did not play as a team” in the later portion of the game and that they tried to use individual talent. She also pointed out that the team had found success through their passing game as they also fell apart in the second half.
UNH ended their five-game winning streak with the loss to Harvard. It was their longest win streak in over five years.
Coach Balducci says the team will need to work on their defense for the upcoming week as they look to pick their momentum back up as they take on #25 ranked Monmouth in Durham on Friday. They will also be looking to grab another win on Sunday as they head to Amherst, Massachusetts to take on UMASS.