Deadlocked, Overtime, Shootout

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We saw 80 minutes of real hockey until it came shoot out time, where the Friars found the back of the cage for a 3-1 win in shots made. On the scoresheet it ends, to be a Providence win 1-0. However, what doesn’t get reported was the effort both teams put into the game. The action went back and forth with a terrific display of skill and athleticism. The pace of the game was definite Division One worthy. It ‘s a shame there couldn’t have been two winners.

However, that’s the way the game is played. It wasn’t without controversy as it appeared Lisa Van der Geest had what would have been the game winner as she rifled a shot in the    fourth quarter which appeared to be deflected into the cage. The official saw otherwise. From the vantage point of the stands it looked to be a goal. This is the second game in which Van der Geest did not have the opportunity to have a goal reviewed as would have happened in the ACC or Big Ten. PLEASE PATRIOT LEAGUE GET INTO THE 21st CENTURY AND ALLOW INSTANT REPLAY!!  

It’s done in basketball and football…come on people!!

I am still. proud of our Leopards they displayed grit, determination and heroics. Twice they had to play a player down, especially daunting during the overtime period. Lisa Van der Geest is a wonderful leader. She came back on the field after being hit on her thumb it appeared. Audrey Sawers was an ubiquitous presence on offense and defense. Cam Costello and Caroline Turnbull were all over the field. Sarah Park played wonderfully in the regular game and overtime, making save after save ( 6 for each GK). Shots were 12 to ll in Providence’s favor, and  each team had 9 PC’s,

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High stick is still disallowed? Isn’t it? This is no game for cowards!!

Lafayette will win games, they are good!! Sunday might be the trick. Richmond beat Lehigh 4-2 with a better second half after Lehigh took early leads.

For the second time this season the stands approach 500 fans!!

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Future all Americans practice their moves on the turf before the game!!

It was youth day and a plethora of young players joined their heroines on the field during the pregame introductions.

Leopards Return Home To Play Providence

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Leopards get ready in Maroon Club strength center!!

Providence will leave the friendly confines of Rhode Island for only the second time this season. As far as I can tell, it may be their first visit to Lafayette, ever, as well. They are riding a three game win streak ( Maine, Bryant and Brown) and a two game unscored upon  run. The Leopards will be looking to avenge a 2-0 loss to Friars last year at their place during a senior day game. That game was played after an important win against Holy Cross the previous day. It was a day that both teams were only to take 14 shots, total, during the game. According to the Friars web site Providence has a 2-0 record with Lafayette.

This week both teams have played their last game on Sunday, and will have had all week to prepare. For Providence, it will be the only game of the week, before they play Old Dominion next week. Lafayette will be hosting Richmond at home on Sunday.

Lafayette will be playing only their second game at home for the season, and will be trying to break a three game losing streak, two of which were with top 20 teams. The relative stats are hard to figure out, but one thing is clear, Lafayette must begin to find their sustained offense, having only scored 6 goals on 39 shots to date. Providence has averaged 2,75 goals a game with their highest production against Maine, where they scored 5 goals. They have taken a total of 59 shots so far this season, to give them the 11 goals.

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Senior Allyson Parker from Providence moves the ball against Boston Universtiy

At this point in the season, it’s difficult to assess statistics, as can be demonstrated by the ACR ( Average Computer Rating), RPI (Ratings Percentage Index), and the SOS ( Strength of Schedule). Using those three indexes indicates an advantage to Lafayette. Calculated by Field Hockey Corner, the ACR is the average to two computer ratios, one based on goal differential and the other on won loss record. The RPI is based on .25 W/L record, .50 on SOS, and .25 on opponents W/L record. The SOS is based on opponents W/L record.

First, the key to understanding the outcomes, so far this season, is the SOS. Providence scores 75th on SOS while Lafayette scores 5th. Meaning to date, Lafayette has had the 5th most difficult schedule in Division one. Using RPI, in which 50% of the score is based on SOS Lafayette is ranked 30 while Providence is 58. (Lower is better). Even in the ACR, Lafayette get an edge 46 to 49. I do admit, that these indices get more reliable as the season progresses, but it does caution us, that W/L’s can be deceiving.

In any case, this is a competitive game, and the Leopards are at home. Looking at the internals Providence goals have been spread around. There are 4 players on Providence who have scored 2 goals apiece. Izzy Mendez (4),Kara Sanford (5), Niamh Gorwing (7), and Olivia Ward (13). Mendez and Gorwing are starters and the other two have come off the bench! Goalkeeping stats are in Providence’s favor with 78-68  save percentage.

I am looking for a good game with a good crowd of supporters!!!

USA Field Hockey Issues Statement On Kent State Fiasco

Last night, Sept. 10 at 9:26 pm Simon Hoskins, USA Field Hockey’s Executive Director issued a statement regarding the abrupt stoppage of an overtime game between Temple and Maine by an official of Kent State, so that fireworks could be set off near the adjacent football stadium scheduled for one hour and 15 minutes later.

” The unfortunate abrupt cancellation of the University of Maine versus Temple University NCAA Division 1 field hockey match played at Kent State University on Saturday, September 7 has caused great concern within out sport. The appearance is that the student athletes playing field hockey were not given the appropriate opportunity to complete their game due to circumstances around the start of the football pre-game fireworks and competition to follow.

As the National Governing Body for the sport of field hockey, we at USA Field Hockey are passionate that all who participate in this sport are given a fair opportunity to compete. Not allowing the teams to continue the contest following a single overtime and scoreless game hinders that chance and diminishes acceptance of field hockey. As we continue to grow this sport in the United States, this situation makes it even more difficult to empower our athletes and the field hockey community. We take. pride in the representation of the sport at the collegiate level and rely on it for the furthering our success on the national and international stage.

We at USA Field Hockey applaud both the University of Maine and Temple University for their handling of the situation and  will continue to support the idea that ALL STUDENT ATHLETES HAVE EQUAL ACCESS TO THE RIGHT TO COMPETE.”

Well said Simon!!

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Amanda Magadan deflects the ball for the score!!

Since the initial reports on Saturday, there have been strong statements by Temple, national media, and Maine. The first remarks by Kent State were tepid at first, but after having time to absorb the impact, they made a stronger statement.

The University of Maine’s head coach and players had a televised press conference yesterday and the emotion was palpable. I would have liked to have seen the administration of the University of Maine at that conference as well in support! The Temple administration issued a statement Monday that was right on point.

WHERE IS THE NCAA?? Their absence of any action, is deafening to the senses. Perhaps they are chasing down minor compliance violations like flawed paperwork or an ice cream cone bought by a booster for a friend’s family member at a game. This action by Kent State is a direct violation of Title  IX. I don’t want to see the Kent Field Hockey program punished but perhaps a remedy that benefits all parties should be applied.

All athletic administrations should be in support of remedies that make sense. I would like to see more support from a variety of sources which will force the NCAA to take action. Perhaps their worry is that the ultimate consequence might be additional mandated monetary support for women’s athletics!!

I want equal access, no diversion of funds, equal pay, especially for asst, coaches, travel expenses on par with all sports. Again at the moment it looks like the NCAA has failed again. I hope I am wrong!!

William Rappolt

 

Outrageous Behavior By Kent State Administrators

Tell Me It Isn’t So Joel

So, Temple and Maine travel to Kent State to play field hockey between each other. The Saturday game began early, but goes into overtime. According to Riley Field, a player for Maine, the first overtime ended at 10:45. And as people know, who are aware of the rules, in field hockey after the break, the second 10 minute overtime would continue in a “golden goal” format. If there is still a tie at the end it goes to a shootout.  So, I would estimate a total of 30 additional minutes max. remain to complete the game if a goal was not scored. I can arrange for the administration to receive a copy of the rules for their edification!!

However, there was a hiccup. It seems they were to play a football game at noon at the nearby stadium. It must have been a huge nationally televised game?? NOT….it was the big game against Kennesaw State. The field hockey field is adjacent to the 25,000 seat football stadium, Dix Field.( about 18,500 had paid for the football game) But to celebrate this marquee matchup, they were to have fireworks set off nearby the field hockey field. Now, perhaps the two football teams wouldn’t know it was time to start the game until the noise of the fireworks happened. I can’t imagine what would possess an intelligent person to do what happened next!.

The Kent State  “administration”, at 10:45 marched on the field hockey field, and stopped a game of which Kent State had invited both teams to play on their field. This was totally disrespectful and unnecessary.  It reflects badly on the University. I thought once a game begins only the referees can stop a game!!!

In case you’re wondering, the Athletic Director, whose job it is to enforce Title IX is Joel Nielsen. Or maybe the President of the University might appreciate a call. At the very least, Kent State should reimburse Maine and Temple for all expenses. in traveling to Ohio. Maybe the person responsible for this fiasco should consider another line of work that doesn’t require a sense of fairness. Just sayin!!!

The Traffic Was Just Too Much

While Lafayette was battling App State, Pam and I were battling RT 66 outside of DC. It was 6;45 by the time we got to Culpepper and by my GPS, it was calculating were to get to Lynchburg after the game. So we turned around and tried to follow the game on our cell phones. Since there was no live stream we had to be satisfied with live stats and that was a disaster as well.

As we turned onto Rt 17 toward Fredricksburg heading to 95 south, things started to get interesting after a score by Sam Di Maio (her second of the season). But then the signal dropped!! Somewhere on 95 near Washington it became tied at one. By the time we got on 295 heading for the tunnel near Baltimore the signal lit up again and it was 2-2. Pam got tired of driving, this now our seventh hour on the road, so I took over driving until we had to finally stop for gas. ( We like to stop outside of Pa, where regular gas is 2.29 a gallon). The glee at saving 40 cents a gallon quickly evaporated as I was finally able to view the final score.

Congrats to Felicitas for her second goal, and in fairness to the App State team they are  yet to be defeated. Meghan Smart, their junior star, as she has done previously, delivered the game winner with a little over 3 minutes left. ( It was her 4th and 5th goal of the season).

So there are no pictures. ( you can look at my previous post which has a picture of Meghan Smart) Outside of all that the stats seemed to indicate an even game. Unfortunately we will not attend the Liberty game, since we have a commitment we couldn’t change after we finally got the schedule this summer. But it is on ESPN plus, so we will be firing up the home theatre and Apple TV to view!! Go  Pards!!

I could have included some picture from previous games but……

A win against Liberty will do a lot to turn my funk around tonight. I believe we have a very fine squad of field hockey players. I would love to surprise the “Flames” on Sunday.

Meanwhile at other venues:

Delaware 4 American 0

Holy Cross 4 Merrimack 1

Lehigh 4 Towson 1

Lock Haven 3 Colgate 3

BU 2. New Hampshire 1

 

Bucknell plays VCU tomorrow.

Leopards Hit The Road..Next Up Appalachian State

Lafayette field hockey will play two opponents this weekend in Lynchburg Va., the home of Liberty University. The Leopards will be meeting two undefeated teams. First up on Friday will be Appalachian State who spent last weekend in the Washington, D.C. area going 2-0. On Sunday at noon Lafayette will be playing Liberty who at present is 1-0 and will play at 3pm against Richmond before the Mountaineer- Leopard game. The nationally ranked Liberty team beat JMU 5-1 on Sunday.

The Leopards would be making a mistake to overlook this confident, but tenacious Mountaineer squad. This is the best start Head Coach Megan Dawson has had since taking the job. In a press conference earlier this week she praised the Mountaineer defense… calling it gritty.

” We know we might be slight underdogs, but we will bring that gritty style to the game. It will be a tough game because teams will improve as they move on.” She is looking for more from her offense, especially in the area of penalty corners and given the new 4 quarter format, she predicted breakaways.” We are not cocky and see the weekend as a big test.”  She praised her unscored upon defense in particular.

Their leading scorer is number 13 Megan Smart who scored both game wining goals, and total of three out of the four goals all weekend…..all from the field!!

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Aside from the unscored upon moniker, the stats are similar. Both team have four goals on the season. The Leopards have taken 9.5 shots per game, the Mountaineers 11. The percentage of goals vs shots is  21 percent for Lafayette and 18 pct for App. State. Leopards however, have given up 30 shots ( skewed by the Syracuse game) to the Mountaineers 15 shots.

After the Syracuse game, like Dawson, Head Coach Jennifer Stone had praise for her defensive unit, ” I thought our defensive unit was incredibly strong and resistant.”  She also opined, that the recent experience has primed this team for the rest of the season.

I suppose, since both coaches see their teams strong defensively, we are destined for a high scoring game (ha! ha!). But I do think its time for our scorers to break out. I personally hope to see more shots from Lafayette, providing our players with rebounding scoring opportunities. But we shall see. In any case, we will need to bring our “A” game against this improving program.

Lafayette Nearly Upsets Syracuse

An aggressive Leopard Field Hockey team nearly pulled out the upset with a determined effort Monday night against Syracuse. It was the defense again, which would be the center of the  Lafayette game as they were able to turn away a skilled and speedy Syracuse attack.

Lafayette opened the first quarter with a goal from Caroline Turnbull off a penalty corner, assisted by Simone Hefting and Lisa van der Geest after only 3:47 had run off the clock. The Syracuse Orange were stymied again and again as the Lafayette Leopards turned away and controlled the game during the first half. Things were really going Lafayette’s way as Audrey Sawers made a terrific reverse shot on a difficult angle from the right side to make it 2-0 at 13:27.

However Charlotte DeVries, Syracuse’s star freshman, collected a rebound at 26:55 and planted a goal that made it 2-1 going into the half. That seemed to energize the home team and Syracuse changed their tactics by going for the long ball rather than trying to challenge the Lafayette defense in the middle of the field. This enabled Syracuse to control possession for the remainder of the game. At 34:05 Syracuse found Tess Queen assisted by DeVreis  and Carolin Hoffman during a penalty corner for their tying goal.

Lafayette had no shots during the remainder of the game but it was the Lafayette defense which turned away threat after threat despite being out shot 12-0 in the last 41 minutes. During the last 2 minutes of the half Lisa van der Geest was to be hit for a yellow card and the Leopards were to play short handed for the remaining half, and 3 minutes of the first overtime. It was an amazing effort by a defense which may be one the best in country.

Junior Claire Cooke takes possession of the ball from Lafayette College.
Lafayette defender Simone Hefting battles Syracuse attacker

The defense again was to be outstanding in overtime, turning away threat after threat, driving the game into a second overtime period. Laura Graziosi, shortly into the second overtime received a lofting pass in front of the cage and found herself one on one with Sara Park, Sara came out to defend and did get a glove on the ball, but it went in despite her efforts.

I have to lastly laud the Lafayette defense again, who played an outstanding game and nearly provided the plays that might have given the Leopards the upset.

Lafayette will travel to Lynchburg, Va to play  two games. On Friday they will meet App. State and Sunday it will play nationally ranked Liberty University.

Since Lafayette was playing an ACC opponent they benefited by video replay, reversing a decision, awarding Syracuse a penalty corner at a crucial point in the second half. I urge again that the PL adopt instant replay. Perhaps, at least for the playoff games, wherever that may be!!