By Ronald Hanaki
ESU’s Field Hockey program beat the Mercyhurst University Lakers 7-2 to remain ranked No. 1 in the NFHCA (National Field Hockey Coaches Association) Division II poll last Saturday. With the win, Head Coach Sandy Miller has 399 victories in her illustrious career.
The Warriors beat the Lakers 7-0 last season, so the team was feeling confident about its chances.
Senior center back and PSAC Champion Scholar Sydney McCarthy scored the game’s first goal on a penalty corner in the 12th minute for an early 1-0 lead.
But Mercyhurst sophomore midfielder Clare Ahern scored the equalizer on another penalty corner in the 19th minute to tie the game 1-1.
The rest of the game was mostly ESU. The Warriors put down the hammer and scored six straight goals to close out Mercyhurst.
Junior forward Makenna Marhefka scored three unassisted goals in the second half for her first career hat trick.
Senior forward Melanie Shambaugh is the breakout star for the team this season. The Shermansdale, Pa. native was as advertised as she scored two goals and had one assist. Shambaugh and McCarthy are both tied for the team lead with seven goals on the season.
Other Warriors who scored in the game are sophomore midfielder Karly Conway and junior forward Bailey Quinn.
Senior goalkeeper Halle Frisco started and played most of the game. Frisco had one save as the defense did not give up many scoring opportunities to Mercyhurst.
Sophomore goalkeeper Maddie Richie played the last fifteen-and-a-half minutes and made two saves.
Mercyhurst junior goalkeeper Victoria Triaga made nine saves in the loss.
The Warriors outshot the Lakers 27-7. They also had seven penalty corners to only five for Mercyhurst.
ESU played Shippensburg in a game pitting the country’s top two teams yesterday.
The Warriors (8-1) are on the road to play IUP (4-4) this Saturday.
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