The field hockey team suffered its fourth straight loss on Tuesday night, falling to seventh-ranked Tufts by a score of 4-0. The Jumbos improve to 3-0 in the NESCAC and 4-0 overall, while the Cardinals are zero for two in NESCAC games.
“Throughout the entire 70 minutes, we played a very good hockey game against them,” said Captain Anna Howard ’15. “I am very proud of how we played against a very strong team.”
Although Wesleyan was outshot 12-2 and only had one penalty corner compared to the Jumbos’ eight, the game was not as lopsided as the stats and score would indicate.
“[Tufts] definitely did not dominate the game, and the biggest thing was that they capitalized on their corners,” Howard said. “Most of the game was played in the middle of the field, and our attack had the ball for a good amount of time throughout the game.”
After giving up three goals in a 15-minute period during the first half, the Cards really picked up their play. In the second half, the Jumbos only had four shots and one penalty corner.
“I think that our team played very well throughout the entire game, especially in the second half when we only gave up one defensive corner that they were unable to score on,” Howard said.
The Redbirds continued to implement the new system Head Coach Patti Klecha-Porter started using last week, and it seems to be paying off.
“I think the new formation works very well for us [because] we can easily support each other and weave the ball down the field,” Howard said. “We need to keep playing like we played against Tufts, and we need to keep getting one percent better each day.”
Despite the loss, the Cardinals were pleased with the way they played, and know what they need to improve on to take that next step. By playing and keeping up with a team like Tufts, Wesleyan shows that it can hang with the best in the country.
“We did a great job on Tuesday,” said Captain Hannah Plappert ’16. “We did a good job of dropping back and tracking their transfer balls, and we had great passing and communication. We are going to continue to improve on our one-on-one skills as well as our circle defense.”
The Cards finish their four-game road trip this Saturday, Sept. 20 at Bates. The Birds look to get back on track with a victory against a team they have had success against in the past. In 14 games against the Bobcats, the Cardinals have won 12, including the last eight encounters. Bates is last in the conference, standing at 0-3 in-league, while Wes is 0-2. They are two of four teams that stand winless in the league, so this match-up will have important playoff implications in the tightly packed conference.
“We’re excited for Saturday, [and we know] Bates is going to be a great game just like any NESCAC game; every team in our conference is challenging,” Plappert said. “We are going to start the game with confidence and play with intensity for the full 70 minutes.”