The field hockey team defeated Utica College 2–1 Saturday at Yavits Field. This was the first Empire 8 Conference win for the Bombers this season. The Blue and Gold’s record is now 4–5 overall and 1–2 in Empire 8 competition.
“Today’s game was a huge game because Utica is ranked No.1 in our conference and we are currently tied for last,” senior forward Katie Brown said. “They beat two teams that we lost to we needed to beat them. So if it comes down to not making E8. They can see that we can beat teams that are ranked higher.”
This win helps to keep the Blue and Gold’s chances of making the playoffs. The team has three Empire 8 games remaining on the schedule this season.
It was also the final game to be played on Yavits Field. The team will be moving to the new turf field for its next home game October 18th.
The Blue and Gold scored in the first three minutes of the game. Junior Heather Kozimor scored and sophomore forward Julia Conroy had the assist.
In the second half Conroy scored the second goal for the Bombers. Conroy received a pass from freshman forward Sam English and put it past the goalie for the point.
Utica scored off a corner play near the end of the game when junior defender Jessica Ahearn scored and sophomore forward Allie Straub contributed the assist. Utica continued to pressure the Bombers but could not score the equalizer.
The South Hill squad is working on taking the season one game at a time. Conroy said the success of the team has to do with practices this week.
“We have to adapt to each surface that we are on,” Conroy said. “This week we worked on give and go’s up the field and quick passes. That’s what really helped us today.”
The Bombers also used double-teaming to get the ball back and quickly transition back to offense.
“One of coaches’ biggest things is double teaming,” freshman forward Sam English said. “If a girl from the opposite team has the ball one girl is running beside her with her stick down and another girl is coming to take the ball away. That’s the easiest way to get the ball from the opponent without fouling. Which we’ve been working on since day one.”
The Bombers had a series of corners near the end of the game but failed to score again.
Utica outshot the South Hill squad 11–10. The Bombers had the advantage in penalty corners 10–9.
Sophomore goalie Kelly Singleton had eight saves and allowed one goal. Utica’s goalie, senior Monica Storms recorded four saves and allowed two goals.
The Bombers return to action at 5 p.m. Saturday against the University of Rochester in Rochester, N.Y.