No. 7 ESU Field Hockey swept its pair of games against the Lindenwood University Lions and the No. 3 Saint Anselm College Hawks over Family Weekend to improve its record to 5-2 this season.
ESU created many chances to score against Lindenwood last Saturday. But the Warriors could not capitalize on their opportunities.
The Warriors were awarded a penalty stroke in the first quarter, but the shot went wide.
Instead, it was Lindenwood who drew first blood.
Lindenwood senior Pauline Terwindt scored the first goal of the game late in the first period off of a penalty corner to give the Lions an early 1-0 lead over the Warriors.
The Warriors bounced back and created many chances to score in the second period, but they would trail by one goal at halftime.
The Warriors would finally get the equalizer they needed with three minutes left in the third period.
Freshman Jady van Gils passed the ball to junior Hanna Lewis who scored to tie the game. Then three minutes into the final period, ESU senior Morgan Mesenbrink scored to give ESU a 2-1 lead.
Mesenbrink would score another goal and van Gils scored her first goal of the season to give ESU a 4-1 win over Lindenwood.
Despite the win, Head Coach Sandy Miller thought it was an uneven performance by her team.
“We just had a slow start today,” Miller said.
“Other than that, we got it going,” Miller said.
“We scored three goals in one quarter, and we’ll take that,” Miller said.
Sunday’s big game was against Saint Anselm College.
Two years ago, ESU lost to Saint Anselm in the national semifinal game. So, this was a revenge game for the Warriors.
The two nationally ranked powerhouses battled to a standstill after the first period.
But three minutes into the second period, Mesenbrink scored the first goal of the game to give ESU an early 1-0 lead.
But just before the period ended, Saint Anselm junior Joanna Archambault scored to tie the game 1-1 at halftime.
In the second half, ESU and Saint Anselm remained locked up in a tight one until late into the fourth period.
With three minutes left in regulation, ESU was awarded a penalty stroke.
Senior Celeste Veenstra took the first two penalty strokes this season, but she missed them both. So Miller promised to make a change with who took the penalty stroke.
This time, it was junior Olivia Breen who took the penalty stroke for the Warriors.
Breen’s shot went past Saint Anselm’s goalkeeper and gave the Warriors their third win of the season over a nationally-ranked opponent.
Breen admitted to being nervous about taking the winning penalty stroke.
“I was nervous,” Breen said. “But we practice it all the time, so I felt comfortable.”
“It was a great team win,” Breen said. “We really out-passed them.”
Miller was happy for her team to get two wins over the weekend.
“We were a little extra passionate today because this was a revenge match from the semifinal two years ago,” Miller said.
“So it was a really good game. We just played 60 minutes of great hockey,” Miller said.
ESU Field Hockey (5-2) will travel to Erie, Pa. to play Mercyhurst University this Sunday on the 26th.
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