The Patriot League tournament ended on an exciting note as all the playoffs games were played with one goal margins. Favorite, Boston University was the survivor and moved on to the first round game with Miami of Ohio. They became a victim of this offensive power, and uncharacteristically lost 2-0. As a result and in summation of their season their RPI slipped, as did the RPI of the whole league. No doubt the four top teams will remain the favorites next year but the recruiting season should be an interesting one.
The league itself is populated by strong underclass talent. Lafayette is not an exception with Lisa van der Geest getting first team all region honors along with senior Theresa Delahanty. None of the Patriot League teams have announced their signees, but the rest of the country has begun to reveal their incoming classes
The NCAA tournament lived up to the hype as Miami left the tournament in the first round but the play by the top remaining teams made for some exciting hockey. Especially interesting was the game, which I attended between Princeton and Harvard. The game was witnessed by many from the region including the teams from Yale, Columbia, St. Joseph’s and Penn. The overtime game which featured a controversial stroke call against Princeton ended in a one goal victory for the Tigers as third year Coach Carla Tagliente moved her team onto the final four and a second date with her Alma Mater University of Maryland.Terps.
Meharg and the Terps prevailed in overtime to set up a number one vs number two championship between Maryland and the University of North Carolina. Carolina was more than the Terps could handle. I have remarked that in the ACC championship game Carolina played 27 players. It looks like we will see more of the powder blue next year but rumors are that super coach Karen Shelton may retire. It was inevitable that these two super coaches Meharg and Shelton would meet in the end. Missy Meharg returns next year and no doubt will be in the hunt.
One of the more remarkable coaching jobs was done by Lynn Farquar at Saint Joseph’s University. Lynn’s four year record is 51-28 and this year was 18-3 deserving a ranking in the top ten, a first for Saint Joseph’s who had a very mediocre record prior to Farquar’s arrival. One wonders how long Farquar will remain given her record. She has to be a. hot commodity at this moment.
Temple has announced the resignation of their four year coach Mary Beth Freeman. She had a record of 21-55 during her stay. She had replaced 17 year head coach Amanda Janney who had move to Indiana. Ironically Janney resigned from Indiana citing family and health reason. After 20 years in the profession her record at Indiana was 27-47.
We will all have to wait for the spring for field hockey news, but luckily the US Team is playing and will start the new FIH league with a game to be played at Wake Forest’s field in February. They also have a remarkably young team with Lafayette veteran Amanda Magadan as a significant contributor.
No doubt as I get information either officially or through social media on Lafayette’s new class, I will relay that on to my readers. Meanwhile best wishes and holiday greetings this winter season and “Success!”