The Radcliffe field hockey team opened its season yesterday afternoon with a 5-0 victory over Jackson College.
Playing before a sparse crowd, the Radcliffe squad started slowly, but a four-goal outburst midway through the second half clinched the win.
Neither team sparkled in the first half as play centered around the midfield region. Radcliffe's first score came with only five minutes gone as sophomore Lori Johnson, playing at center-forward, knocked in a rebound off the Jackson goalie's pads.
Radcliffe coach Pippy O'Conner attributed her halfbacks' inability to keep the ball in the Jackson end of the field during the first half to the team's lack of practice. Yesterday was only the fifth time that the Radcliffe squad had played together.
However, the second half was another story as Radcliffe kept the ball in the Jackson end for the bulk of the period.
With five minutes gone in the second half, veteran left wing Kathy Agoos pushed a shot past beleaguered Jackson goalie Ann Meeker to increase the lead to 2-0.
The dam then broke soon after the ten-minute mark, as left inside Ann Ballen, also a returnee from last year's 3-1-1 squad, scored three goals within five minutes.
Radcliffe team captain and goalie Barbie Matson was not challenged once in the second half as the Radcliffe defense easily stopped all of Jackson's scoring opportunities.
After the game, fullback Liz Gordon, commenting on the squad's lack of practice, said that the experienced players had held the team together. "The veterans kept the team in control of the game," Gordon said.
Coach O'Conner attributed Radcliffe's second-half surge to the halfback's keeping the ball in the Jackson half of the field. O'Conner singled out halfback Nancy Sato and hat-trick-scorer Ann Ballen as outstanding players in the game.
In another game played yesterday, the Radcliffe junior varsity lost to Jackson by a 2-1 score. Center forward Abby Homans got the only Radcliffe goal late in the first half to tie the score, but Jackson completely dominated the second half.
The varsity will play at Northeastern on Tuesday in the second game of their 11-game schedule and will be home next Thursday to oppose Wheaton.