Trying to score against the Quakers this week? Good luck.
Penn field hockey defeated Dartmouth and Temple, both in shutouts, this weekend. The Red and Blue continued their successful season, mixing stellar defense with effective scoring plays, as junior goalkeeper Liz Mata did not allow a single goal in either game.
On Friday, Penn (8-3, 2-1 Ivy) visited Dartmouth (3-8, 0-4) and won a 1-0 thriller in double overtime. Penn came in confident after last year’s 3-2 overtime victory against the Big Green.
Although Penn controlled the game throughout, with 27 shots compared to Dartmouth’s seven and 11 shots on goal compared to five, the game remained scoreless through regulation and the first overtime period. Freshman back Alexa Schneck broke the tie with a game-winning shot to the left post.
“Everyone was just going crazy. The smile on her face was usual; she’s a very happy kid. I think it meant a lot to her and she’s still on cloud nine, I can tell,” junior attack Alexa Hoover said. “That’s good for her, as a freshman, that’s definitely a big confidence booster.”
“She played a great game, from start to finish, so I can’t say I was surprised that she was the one who had the winning goal for us,” coach Colleen Fink added. “I think that was kind of a nice reward for her for playing as hard as she did. She generated a lot of offensive scoring opportunities for us.”
Goalkeeper Liz Mata had five saves, protecting the net for all of regulation and both overtime periods.
“I think really it’s our composure and mindset coming into the game,” Mata said. “We come in thinking, ‘we are not going to get scored on.’”
The Quakers have experienced multiple long games this year with four overtime games, including three double-overtime contests.
“We just tell them to not worry about the results and play as hard as they can and live in the moment, not worry about mistakes, because they are going to happen. And just to play as smart and as strong as possible,” the seventh-year coach said.
“It shows that we are very resilient and never want to give up. We are going to keep pushing ourselves to the very end,” Hoover added.
On Sunday, Penn hosted Temple (5-9, 2-2 Big East) at Ellen Vagelos Field and won easily in a 3-0 shutout. Temple has controlled the series historically, leading 26-11 coming into Sunday. However, Penn dominated throughout the contest.
Senior midfielder Elise Tilton struck first for the Quakers, scoring just six minutes into the game. Hoover added two goals in the second half, both assisted both by junior attack Rachel Huang and sophomore center back Paige Meily.
In the second half, the Owls had several opportunities to score, but Penn’s defense remained tough and prevented Temple from capitalizing.
“I think defensively we have been doing a really good job just overall from the start of the season,” Fink said.
With the win, Penn improved to 4-2 at home. Penn next faces Columbia at Vagelos Field on Friday.
Fink said during practice this week, the Quakers will focus on baseline defense and scoring at the top.
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.