Hoping that a little solar energy might help recharge its batteries from what has been a lackluster season so far, the Penn field hockey team (3-9) travelled to California over an extended fall break to challenge three teams from the Golden State. The Quakers began the weekend with a game against Stanford on Saturday. While Penn has pulled even with the Cardinal in the U.S. News rankings, the Quakers were not able to accomplish the same feat on the field as they fell 1-0. The lone goal in the game came with 25 minutes left in the second half off a penalty corner that was put in the net by Stanford forward Noor Dawood after the ball bounced off a Penn defender. After losing to Stanford, the Quakers tried their luck on the opposite end of San Francisco Bay against California. The Golden Bears took a 1-0 lead within the first 10 minutes, and then held that lead throughout the game with solid defensive play. Although the Quakers managed eight shots on goal, Cal goalie Sarah Hoehn successfully countered each of them, and in the process, handed Penn its third shutout loss in a row. "I think in both games we kind of let them control the game, and we played their game instead of forcing them to play ours. We didn't create many offensive opportunities," Penn junior forward Nikki Battiste said. "We have lapses, and usually that's what hurts us. And it only takes a couple of seconds for someone to score. "The defense always does a good job, but we couldn't get the offense going and couldn't create corners. We seem to have been in a slump for three games." The Quakers were given one last shot on Tuesday against Pacific before heading home on the redeye. In fact, Penn took 21 shots on the way to a 4-0 win. Although the first half ended without a goal by either team, Battiste exploded in the second half to score three goals in a row, handing the Red and Blue a commanding lead. Penn freshman Jackie Lange finished off Pacific with a final shot in the last 10 minutes of play. "After the first half, we realized that we had to pick it up and win that game. We completely dominated the second half," Battiste said. "We were a better team, but in the first half we were playing down to their level and then we changed that. "The last three games we have been in a scoring slump, and I knew I had to pick it up and we had to pick it up in the offensive end. There were lots of good passes into the offensive end. All [my] goals were assists." Now that the Quakers have restored confidence in their scoring ability, they will face the challenges of winning their first Ivy League game against Yale next Saturday in New Haven, and breaking their cycle of losses. Penn has followed a strict pattern of Oloss, loss, loss, win' over the course of their last twelve matches. In addition, two of their three-game losing streaks have had recurring themes, the first loss coming in overtime and another being a shutout. In its game against Yale, Penn will face a team that has also gone without a win in the Ivy League this year, but one that is also coming off a convincing 4-1 victory over Quinnipiac. "I think that if we play to our potential, and everyone plays aggressively and moves to the ball that we should win this game against Yale," Battiste said. "We have to win this game against Yale, and we want to. I think everyone is hungry for an Ivy win. Yale just won their last game, and we are both going in with the same type of mentality. We have to be ready to play all 70 minutes. I think we're just tired of being in these games and not ending up on top, and we want this win in a huge way for ourselves."
News and Notes Battiste's hat trick was the first for the Quakers since then-senior Leah Bills netted three goals at Yale in a 3-2 victory last season.Comments powered by Disqus
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