Tanya McAnally tries to get past Caitlin MacKenzie at practice last season at Dix Stadium to prepare for the team’s match against Dartmouth. Kent State Flashes will play Syracuse this Friday in Syracuse, New York.
Credit: Jason Hall
In recent years, the ability to scrape together a victory in close contests has been something the Kent State field hockey team has prided themselves on.
Unfortunately for the Flashes, the youthful 2005 squad has struggled to do just that in the opening three games of the season as a pair of close losses over the weekend dropped them to 0-3 in the young season.
After dropping their season opener to James Madison 3-0 on Aug. 27, the Flashes proceeded to drop two close battles this weekend to Dartmouth (2-1) on Saturday and Boston College (2-3) on Sunday.
Against the Big Green, sophomore midfielder Libby Lame provided the high game’s biggest highlight for Kent State as she recorded her first career goal 17 minutes into the contest to hand the Flashes a 1-0 lead. Dartmouth responded with a goal of its own eight minutes later to knot the game at 1-1. That score remained through the majority of the game until the Big Green jumped ahead 2-1 with just three minutes left in the contest.
Despite going head-to-head with Dartmouth the entire first half and getting off six shots compared to the Big Green’s eight, the second half proved to be the difference-maker in the game as the Flashes were completely dominated on the offensive side of the ball en route to being outshot 10-4.
Sunday was perhaps the toughest loss for the Flashes this season, as they overcame an early 2-0 deficit to tie the game up before falling late to highly touted Boston College 3-2.
The opening half of the game saw very little action, as both teams were held in check offensively until the final 14 seconds of the half, when the Eagles jumped on the scoreboard 1-0 to head into the intermission with a slim lead. Boston College then added another notch to its lead with 23:51 left in the final stanza, taking a comfortable 2-0 lead.
That’s when the Flashes took over.
With time winding down and the game seemingly falling deeper out of reach, the Kent State duo of freshman Melanie Bierens de Haan and junior Elizabeth Lahey jump-started a late surge that brought the Flashes back into the non-conference affair. Bierens de Haan was the first to strike, scoring with 17:04 left on the clock and Lahey promptly responded with a goal of her own no more than three minutes later to knot the game at 2-2. But that was all the Flashes could muster offensively through the remainder of the game, as the Eagles pulled ahead for good, 3-2, with 10 minutes left in the half.
Between the post, redshirt junior Linz Markwart had her best game of the season, recording 10 saves off Boston College’s 18 shots. Kent State only managed half of the Eagle’s output, launching just nine shots of its own.
The Flashes will next be in action this weekend in Syracuse, where they will look to rebound from their rough start against the Orangemen on Friday and then will play William and Mary on Saturday.
Contact field hockey reporter Matt Gottfried at [email protected]