No. 11 Field Hockey Tops Bucknell, 4-1
Oct. 19, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Led by a pair of goals by Jessica Longstreth and three points from Jenny Purvis, the No. 11 ranked Penn State field hockey team downed Bucknell, 4-1, during a non-conference clash on a chilly Tuesday evening at the PSU Field Hockey Complex.
With the victory, the Nittany Lions improve to 10-4 on the season, including 7-3 in their last 10 games. Overall, Penn State now holds a 33-2-2 record all-time against the Bison, who fall to 6-9 on the year.
After a back-and-forth affair during the early part of the contest, Penn State lit up the scoreboard first with just under 15 minutes remaining in the opening half. Lauren Purvis ripped an initial shot on goal, and after Sarah Zargarpour kicked the ball away, Hannah Allison swooped in and corralled the rebound. After gaining control of the ball, Allison unloaded a blast into the back of the cage that gave the Nittany Lions a 1-0 advantage.
With an early lead, the Penn State defense locked down. During the first 35 minutes of action, the Lions held Bucknell without a shot. Although the Bison had some chances in the PSU zone, the defense withstood a pair of penalty corners to keep the game scoreless.
As the defense continued to dominate, the offense picked up where it left off. Following halftime, Penn State quickly added another goal. The Nittany Lions followed the same script that worked in the first half as Longstreth corralled a ricochet and fired a rocket that gave the hosts a 2-0 lead with just over five minutes expired in the second half.
Trailing by two, Bucknell posted a pair of counterstrikes. Kelly Bruvik found some room to run on the far sideline for the Bison and nearly broke free. Despite the offensive, Daneen Zug made a wonderful play to strip the ball from Bruvik and clear the zone. Later, Mallory Smith found some space for Bucknell and fired a shot on goal, but Ayla Halus made a beautiful save to keep the shutout intact.
After withstanding a surge by the Bison, Penn State mounted another attack. Kelsey Amy was at the center of the play as the sophomore took a pass and sped down the sidelines. After breaking free from the defense, she sent a pass across the zone where Jenny Purvis blasted home her first goal of the season.
Just seven minutes later, Purvis continued her outstanding game. After finding some room in the Bucknell defense, she tossed a perfect pass to Longstreth, who quickly notched her second goal of the game which gave the hosts a commanding 4-0 lead.
With time running down, Bucknell mounted one last comeback bid. Kelly Bruvik took the ball and broke free from the Nittany Lion defense. Sprinting towards the cage, she fired a shot that found daylight and gave the Bison their lone goal of the contest with two minutes left in regulation.
During the game, Penn State held a 13-5 advantage in shots and a 9-5 edge in penalty corners. Sarah Zargarpour posted four saves for the Bison, while Ayla Halus and Ali Meves combined to record three for the Nittany Lions.
Penn State will return to action this weekend for a pair of contests at home. The Lions will host Duke on Saturday at noon before facing Princeton on Sunday at 3 p.m. to cap off PSU's home slate.