The field hockey team made its second trip to Boston in three days and suffered a heartbreaking overtime loss 2-1 to Babson College on Friday, Sept. 12. The loss drops the Cardinals to 1-3 on the season, while the Beavers improve to 3-2. With the win, the Beavers snapped a six-game losing streak against the Cardinals that dates back to 2003. The Cardinals have now lost three in a row.
Despite all this, Friday’s game still had a lot of positives.
“On Friday, we all really played as a team and we played with much more confidence and composure,” said Captain Hannah Plappert ’16. “We tried a brand-new system and did a great job adapting to it on the field.”
At the end of the first half, the score was deadlocked at zero, with the Beavers outshooting the Cards eight to five. Despite taking just four penalty corners to the Beavers’ seven, the Cards were determined to get on the board first. The Cardinals finally broke through in the 50th minute of play. Lauren Yue ’17 inbounded off a penalty corner to Plappert, whose shot was blocked by the defense and deflected back to Yue. Yue then centered a pass to Laura Bither ’18 for the goal and a 1-0 lead. This marks Bither’s first goal in a Wesleyan uniform.
“I felt like we did a great job of controlling the pace of the game, and although the stats don’t show it, we definitely had a lot of opportunities,” Plappert said. “We had great ball movement, which really allowed the forwards to push towards the goal and be more offensive, and we also had multiple layers of defense to ensure we did not need to hesitate on defense.”
Despite these defensive layers, the Cardinal lead would not last for long. Less than ten minutes after Bither’s goal, the Beavers answered off a penalty corner of their own to tie the game at one goal apiece.
Still tied after 70 minutes, the Cardinals and Beavers prepared to play their first overtime session of the season. The Beavers made quick work of the Birds in overtime by putting the ball in the back of the net only two minutes and six seconds into the period.
“While it was a loss, our team took steps in the right direction,” Captain Anna Howard ’15 said. “We will only get better and stronger from here.”
The team seems to be improving under the new system that Head Coach Patti Klecha-Porter has implemented.
“I think that [the new system] will work much better for our team,” Howard said. “As we get more comfortable with it, we will be a strong team.”
The Cardinals now prepare for a third and final trip up to Boston on Tuesday at 6 p.m., where they will take on the Tufts Jumbos, a team that the Cards have not beaten in their previous 11 encounters.
“Tufts will be a strong team, and we expect a tough but fun game against them,” Howard said. “As our coach says, we need to get one percent better each day, and if we keep that up, we will be successful!”
The Cardinals know they have their work cut out for them against the Jumbos, but they are looking forward to using their new system.
“We’ve been doing a great job with double teams and communication, and we are going to continue to work on that,” Plappert said. “We really need to come out strong on Tuesday. Tufts is always a challenging [team], but we are excited to try out our new system on them.”