Girls Field Hockey Suffers DIsappointing Defeat
The No. 20 Harvard field hockey team suffered a setback yesterday, dropping, 4-3, to the University of New Hampshire in Durham, N.H.
The unusually high scoring affair came down to the wire with UNH outlasting a determined Harvard attack in the second half to hold on to the win. New Hampshire (6-5) scored twice in the opening period and its defense kept the Crimson off the scoreboard for the entire first half. In the second period the Crimson offense got underway, scoring three goals, including two in the last eight minutes, but still fell a strike short.
Harvard (5-3, 2-0 Ivy) struck first in the second half on a goal by junior back Katie Turck, assisted by freshman forward Katie McDavitt. UNH would tally the next two goals, but Harvard would respond with a late flurry to make the game close.
The first of Harvard's late goals came off the stick of senior forward Kate Nagle, with freshman forward Mina Pell assisting. Pell would also feature on Harvard's third goal, dished a pass to fellow freshman Maria van Wagenberg with just over a minute to play in the contest.
In the end though, Harvard's rally came up short and the Crimson suffered its third defeat of the season. UNH did, however, have a huge home field advantage. The Wildcats play on natural grass, which is a detriment in field hockey since the ball takes unusual bounces and slows down play overall.
Harvard only has two natural grass games on its schedule this year, having dumped its own lawn last year in favor of the luxurious artificial turf of Jordan Field.
"We're really excited to be going back to turf," said captain Maisa Badaway. Badaway felt that the team had a difficult game but was pleased with the effort she saw out on the field.
"We fought through the circumstances and worked hard for every ball," Badaway said. "But we could have been more consistent."
An encouraging sign for the Crimson was the offensive balance exhibited by the team. Getting goals and assists from three freshmen shows that Harvard has many threats in its lineup.
Badaway praised the work that went into setting up all three Crimson goals:
"I really felt that the midfields and forwards worked hard today," she said.
The Crimson now looks ahead to a showdown with Ivy League rival Cornell this Sunday at Jordan Field.
"We are totally focused on the Ivies, all this other stuff is just dress rehearsal," Badaway said.