Sunday’s season opener for Colgate’s field hockey team was met with great anticipation despite the dreary weather. Die-hard fans watched through a rainy haze as the Raiders fell in overtime with a score of 4-3.
The first score of the contest came from Radford’s Erica Lawrence, twenty-five minutes into the game. This was closely followed up by a far side goal delivered off of Kristen Griffith’s stick.
Not overwhelmed, Colgate stepped up their play with a good set of passes to enable their first goal of the match. Sophomore Laura Flisnik sent a pass from the upper left corner of the box that found classmate Amanda Gilmore ready for a goal.
A mere six seconds before the half, the Raiders found themselves in scoring territory once again. The freshman-sophomore duo of Mika Ella-Tang and Lauren Carey double teamed Radford in a sweep down the field ending with a goal by Carey.
“[The goal] was what the team need,” Carey said. “It gave us a confidence boost; our way of saying we weren’t giving up.”
The half brought more rain, giving the participants a chance to catch their breath. A revved-up Raiders team reclaimed the field when they took a hold of the lead after 8:13 of play. As Colgate attempted a shot conversion on a penalty, Radford’s goalkeeper, Megan Stucke, lost control of the ball, sending it rebounding into the stick of freshman Katelyn Nerbonne. The mid-fielder wasted no time, sliding it straight to junior Lauren Remkus, who then took on Stucke for another Raider’s score.
Colgate stayed atop the scoreboard for another half minute, until Stephanie McLamb blasted a pass to Tiffany Church. Church shot through the Raider’s back line on a fast break to score on senior Jacque DeMarco, tying the match 3-3.
Remaining tied at the end of regulation, the two teams headed to overtime. After a mere two minutes of play McLamb, Church and DeMarco faced off again. McLamb forced DeMarco out of position on a shot. After the save, Church followed up with another which sailed straight into the net.
Statistically, the Raiders worked well as a team, with shots and assists spread well throughout the entire team. DeMarco racked up five saves, while teammate Carey challenged Radford with five shots. Other shots for Colgate came from Remkus, Flisnik, Gilmore, and Nerbonne. Overall, both teams acquired 10 shots, with Carey leading the Raiders and Megan Longtain and Church doing the same for Radford.
Despite Sunday’s lost, the young team shows hope for quite a promising future. “We are really underestimated by other teams because of our age,” Carey said. “But our expectations for ourselves are high.”
With a securely accurate passing game, look for them to hold a strong opposition to all challenges this season. Wednesday, August 30 takes them on the road to challenge Albany before they return home to take on Rider University at Tyler’s Field on Saturday, September 2.