Kent State field hockey falls 3-2 to Delaware

Jeff Russ

The Kent State field hockey team improved their play from Saturday, but still fell to Delaware 3-2 at the Buckeye Invitational on the North Turf Field in Columbus.

“I feel so much better today than I did (Saturday),” head coach Kathleen Schanne said. “We got on the board early, put pressure on and fought really hard.”

Junior forward Natalie Barrett got the Flashes on the board a minute into the game with an unassisted breakaway goal.

“It was a total team effort,” Barrett said. “It was set up by great defense and ball movement; all I had to do was put the ball in the goal.”

With two goals and two assists, Barrett has contributed to every Kent State goal this season and has caught the attention of her coach.

“She’s playing good,” Schanne said. “She was knocked down hard (Saturday) and we’re looking to get her healthy. I’m looking forward to a lot of great things from Natalie.”

Delaware’s pressure-style offense gave the Flashes early problems as the Fighting Blue Hens scored two goals midway through the first half to take the lead.

But tough defense and diving saves by goalkeeper Kara Copeland kept the game close.

“I was happy with my performance,” Copeland said. “I definitely played better today than I did yesterday.”

Early in the second half, Barrett found senior midfielder Anna McComb at the left of the goal for the game-tying score.

“I was right on the post, and Natalie made a great assist,” McComb said. “We were so hungry to tie the game up.”

But late in the game Delaware scored the game-winning goal on a penalty corner.

The loss sends the Flashes to 0-2 on the season after the team lost to Bucknell 3-2 in Columbus Saturday.

“I was happy with this weekend,” Schanne said. “We played so much better than (Saturday), and now we have a week of practice to refocus and prepare for next weekend.”

The team travels to Philadelphia next weekend for games against Lock Haven and Pennsylvania.

Contact sports reporter Jeff Russ at [email protected].