Field hockey struggles during season opener

Kent+States+Clara+Rodriguez+Seto+hits+the+ball+forward+as+Miami+%28OH%29s+Paula+Portugal+prepares+to+block+during+the+MAC+Championship+game+at+Murphy-Mellis+Field+Saturday%2C+Nov.+4%2C+2017.+The+RedHawks+beat+the+Flashes%2C+2-1%2C+in+overtime.

Kent State’s Clara Rodriguez Seto hits the ball forward as Miami (OH)’s Paula Portugal prepares to block during the MAC Championship game at Murphy-Mellis Field Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. The RedHawks beat the Flashes, 2-1, in overtime.

Amanda Levine

Kent State’s women’s field hockey team looked to bounce back after their MAC tournament loss to Miami University-OH that ended their 2017 season.

Old Dominion 1 – Kent State 0

In the Flashes’ season opener on Saturday, the team had a strong defensive game holding Old Dominion University to one goal on nine shots. Despite the Flashes effort, the team fell 1-0 to the Monarchs and only had one shot late in the second half.

“I think the team showed a lot of character and persistence,” said coach Kathleen Wiler. “They were really applying the defensive work we’ve worked on all preseason. They had their march, they covered their responsibilities.”

The only goal on the day came in the second half on a penalty shot by Old Dominion’s Erin Huffman.

“I really think if we would have had five more minutes in the game we would have probably scored and equalized,” said Wiler.  “So we’re playing really well, (and) putting a lot of pressure on them (in) the second half, which is great to see.”

Kent State’s (0-2) junior goalie Mary Crumlish had three saves on the day and senior Helen Harper took the only shot for the Flashes late in the second half.

Michigan State 3 – Kent State 2

After Saturday’s tough defensive game, the Flashes looked to come back against the Michigan State Spartans on Sunday, but instead the game ended in a loss in overtime.

The Flashes started off with a strong offensive first half. Sophomore Clara Rodriguez Seto scored both of Kent’s goals for the day. The Spartans came back and scored two goals in the first half as well by Kelsey Keener and Aisha Osinga.

Both teams played a strong defensive game in the second half leading the game into overtime. The Spartan’s Isa Van der Weij scored the winning goal during the 76th minute leading them to a 3-2 victory over the Flashes.

“We need to continue to work on our structure and being effective with our structure,” said Wiler. “I think we need to keep our defensive discipline, which we did so well on Saturday. We need to begin to be consistent throughout the two games.”

The Flashes look to recover in their next game when they take on Liberty University Friday at 1 p.m. in their home opener.

Amanda Levine is a sports reporter. Contact her at [email protected]