Field Hockey’s Win Streak Ends versus Middlebury
On Saturday, Sept. 29, the women’s field hockey team hosted NESCAC foe Middlebury. The Cardinals knew they had a worthy challenger going into the match, as the Panthers sported an undefeated record and a number two rational ranking. Despite Wesleyan’s best efforts, Middlebury came away with a 4-1 victory to extend their winning streak against the Cardinals to 13 games and bolster their all-time record against the Cards to 26-3-1. The Panthers are now the only undefeated NESCAC team.
Middlebury was first to get on the board, with a goal just 6:45 into play. The Panthers held on to a narrow 1-0 advantage until the closing seconds of the opening frame when they scored again, taking a comfortable 2-0 lead into the second half. The Cardinals came close to cutting the lead in half, but an apparent goal was disallowed by the refs.
Despite their frustration at getting a goal called back, the Cardinals finished the first half strong and looked to translate offensive chances into goals. Unfortunately, the second half opened with calls against the Cards that translated into two goals from penalty corners.
With Midd now leading 4-0, co-captain Ashley McLaren ’13 was not going to let the Panthers earn a shutout quite so easily. In her eighth shot of the game, with just six minutes remaining in the contest, McLaren earned her fourth goal of the season off an assist from Vanessa Block ’15.
The final score in the contest was 4-1, but the Cardinals should be proud of the way they competed against this stellar opponent.
“We forced Middlebury to adapt to our style of play and were able to double the number of shots we took in the first half to the second half,” said starting defenseman Lilah Fones ’15.
Goaltender Tori Redding ’13 had an outstanding performance, facing 18 shots on goal and making 14 saves for the Cards. Middlebury’s goaltender turned away eight shots on goal.
The Cardinals look to improve upon their 2-3 NESCAC record this weekend in Maine, when they play Bates College on Saturday and Colby College on Sunday.