No. 9 Field Hockey Moves Past Lafayette with a 3-2 Victory
Sept. 2, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Coming off of a hard loss on Friday against No. 6 Connecticut, the No. 9 Penn State field hockey team rebounded with a 3-2 win over Lafayette on Sunday afternoon at the Field Hockey Complex. The Leopards (2-1) suffered their first loss of the season against the Nittany Lions, who are now 2-1 on the season.
Junior Ashtin Klingler (Selinsgrove, Pa.) earned the game-winning goal, scoring her first of the season late in the first period. After one of Penn State's 15 penalty corners, Klingler took advantage of a rebound off of sophomore Taylor Herold's (Fredericksburg, Va.) shot and fired the ball past Lafayette goalkeeper Jessica Deutsch. It was the forwards' first career game-winner.
The Lions took control within the first minute of play, with Kelsey Amy (Sweet Valley, Pa.) scoring just 26 seconds into the game. The senior gained possession at the first whistle and flew down the far right wing to gain an edge. With a fake-out shot past Deutsch, Amy easily flipped the ball up and into the net to give Penn State a 1-0 lead. It was her fourth goal of the season.
Despite strong defense in the midfield from sophomore Katie Breneman (Washington Boro, Pa.), the Leopards came back at the 9:36 mark to tie the game. Lafayette senior Deanna DiCroce led an offensive attack, firing a shot at goalkeeper Ayla Halus (Hershey, Pa.). Halus made the initial save, however, junior Haley Keenan sent the rebound to junior Hannah Sotiropoulos at the front of the net. Sotiropoulos' shot found the back of the net to score her first goal of the season and set the score at 1-1.
Klingler, who had a tremendous game for the Lions, would score at the 20:40 mark to take the lead. Junior Brittany Grzywacz would give Penn State some insurance, scoring her third of the season minutes later. Herold, who earned an assist on the play, took the corner for the squad and sent the ball up to sophomore Laura Gebhart (Mount Joy, Pa.). Gebhart stopped the ball in prime position for Grzywacz, who sent a commanding shot into the net. The score now sat at 3-2 in favor of the Lions.
The Leopards came out for the start of the second half with a solid defense. Sophomore Jenna Seybert and junior Haley Keenan had several defensive saves in the period, helping fend off the 14 shots taken by Penn State. Deutsch also played an impressive final 35 minutes, holding strong through 11 penalty corners.
"Lafayette came to play today," said head coach Charlene Morett. "They did a great job with defense against us and their goalkeeper played well."
Lafayette conjured up an offensive surge halfway through the second period, with sophomore Brittany Blass creating several scoring opportunities. Finally, DiCroce gained possession after an unsuccessful Penn State penalty corner. The senior rushed down the field at the 50:34 mark and fired a shot past Halus to put the Leopards within one goal of tying the game.
Penn State's offense continued to hustle, with forward Hannah Allison (Mifflinburg, Pa.) setting up sophomore Jenna Chrismer (Mountain Top, Pa.) with a beautiful shot at the front of the net late in the game. Deutsch, however, shut down Chrismer with an excellent save. Gebhart also set up Herold in front of the goalkeeper in the closing minutes, but the Deutsch came out of net to stop the play and keep the score at 3-2.
Time ran out as the Lions took back possession after a scramble in front of Halus, who made 3 saves during the contest. Deutsch recording nine saves. Penn State outshot Lafayette 23-6 and had a 15-3 penalty corner advantage.
"We have Princeton coming in (on Thursday), who has four players that have trained with U.S. National team for the past year," said Morett when asked about moving forward. "I hope that our kids regroup and look at the challenge that is in front of them on Thursday. This game is behind us. They need to watch the tape, learn from it and focus on the next game."
The Lions will return to action on Thursday, Sept. 6, when the squad takes on No. 4 Princeton. The 6 p.m. contest will mark the fourth nationally ranked opponent that Penn State has faced in five games