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The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Field hockey drops rainy match against American

Senior midfielder Ariel Schumacher drives the ball on the wet turf. (Photo by Hannah Ally for GoLeopards)

The field hockey team’s season (3-5 overall, 1-1 Patriot League) has been full of ups and downs. Last Sunday, the team traveled to the nation’s capital to face the American University Eagles (5-4 overall, 2-0 Patriot League) in its second Patriot League conference game.

The match was originally scheduled for Saturday, but was moved to Sunday due to the stormy forecast. Despite the enduring storm, the game commenced. In the first seven minutes, neither team was able to record a shot.

What seemed to be a lackluster first quarter quickly changed when the Leopards were awarded a penalty corner. Just shy of the nine-minute mark, sophomore midfielder Josephine van Wijk combined with senior midfielder Ariel Schumacher to score the first goal of the game. The combination was a stand-out play, as Schumacher’s scored on her second attempt from the top.

Unfortunately, this would be the only addition to the scoreboard for the Leopards, with the Eagles going on to score three unanswered goals in the remaining three quarters. The final score finished 3-1 to the Eagles, with the Leopards dropping important points away from home. 

“[It was] really bitter because we have not won against American in a very long time,” Schumacher said. “There was [so much] momentum going into this game. Looking at it in perspective, we will have a chance to make amends and learn from our mistakes.”

Schumacher has been key off the bench, amassing over 265 minutes since the start of the season. The senior’s goal was her first of the season.

“It was an incredible feeling scoring against American in a really important match against a rival school,” Schumacher said. “[I hope there is] more to come.”

“[There were] a lot of turnovers in the midfield and an overall lack of strength,” Schumacher said. “[We were] too individualized. However, we are always working on [our] connection and being positive. There is definitely progress and room for growth.” 

Another positive takeaway from the game was sophomore midfielder Josephine van Wijk recording her first assist of the season.

“I think [van Wijk] is a very strong and sound player,” Schumacher said. “[She is] a great pivot person in our counter attack, and our overall transition. She’s always trying to get ahead and score, and she is very vital for our team.” 

The Leopards currently sit fifth out of seven in the Patriot League rankings with a score average of 2.00 goals per game. This positive figure seems to be shadowed by their save percentage — the team has the lowest in the league at 0.638.

There are still high hopes for the team after sweeping the Patriot League weekly honors last week. Sophomore goalkeeper Raffi Fragomeni, junior defender India Ralph and freshman midfielder Stella Malinowski were all honored for their outstanding performances in their two wins against Bucknell and Fairfield.

“[The feeling] is very optimistic for our team,” junior midfielder Mackenzie Hall said. “[We] have to trust in our preparation and [we all] know we have the ability and confidence to win against Holy Cross.”

Hall stressed for supporters to come out in numbers this weekend.

“[Our fans] are great,” Hall said. “[We] need them to bring the energy to the games as they are incredible.” 

The Leopards will return to Easton this Saturday at 12 p.m. when they play against Holy Cross at Rappolt Field. 

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