Offense Explodes in Field Hockey's 6-4 Triumph Over Pacific
Oct. 24, 2009
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Freshman Kelsey Amy and junior Daneen Zug each scored twice while junior Jenny Purvis and senior Gina Bartolacci added their first goals of the season to lead the Penn State field hockey team to a 6-4 win over Pacific on Saturday afternoon. The Nittany Lions jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead, but the Tigers fought back to even the score at three before Penn State responded with three consecutive scores for the decisive victory.
SUNDAY UPDATE: Penn State hosts No. 8 Michigan State in the regular season finale on Saturday, Oct. 31 at 12 p.m. The Spartans defeated Michigan on Sunday to improve their conference record to 5-0. Come support the Nittany Lions on Halloween Day as they look to spoil Michigan State's bid for a perfect conference season! It will also be Senior Day, as seven seniors will be playing in the final regular season home game of their careers.
Saturday was Penn State's second neutral site game of the season and first-ever meeting against Pacific. Rebounds were a theme of the day as three goals came off rebound chances while three of the six goals were scored off penalty corners.
The offensive output was the most since last Sept. 19 when the Nittany Lions scored six in a 6-0 home win over Georgetown. Two Lions also finished with multiple goals for the first time since Sept. 17, 2006 when Shaun Banta had three and Allison Scola added two in a 6-0 victory over West Chester.
Purvis got the scoring started with her first-career goal at 2:37, turning a rebound attempt off a penalty corner into a 1-0 lead.
Amy then made it 2-0 at 16:16 when she corralled her own rebound and found the back of the cage. It was 3-0 only 4:20 later when Bartolacci beat Pacific goalkeeper Christina Niccum from the right side. Bartolacci's first goal of the season (and second of her career) was assisted by Amy, marking the second assist in as many days for the freshman from Sweet Valley, Pa.
The Tigers wouldn't quit and they capitalized on their opportunities with goals at 24:14, 24:41 and 36:54 to even the score at three.
Penn State continued its pressure and retook the lead at 52:42 when Zug converted her second goal of the season off a clean corner attempt. Redshirt senior Christine Dudek made the feed to fellow senior Amy Bonenberger, who made the stop for Zug's blast.
Less than three minutes later, Zug intercepted a clearing attempt then beat Niccum for her second goal of the game and third of the season to make it 5-3.
Amy added her second at 63:28 to extend the Lions' lead to 6-3. Pacific's Kim Keyawa responded less than a minute later with her second of the game as well, which made it 6-4 at 64:13.
Final shots were 28-15 in favor of Penn State while it also led in penalty corners, 13-6. The shot total was only one fewer than its season-high of 29 which came in the 5-0 home win over West Chester (Sept. 20). Junior goalkeeper Ali Meves finished with nine saves while Niccum had 10.
Penn State returns home on Oct. 31 for the regular season finale at 12 p.m. vs. No. 8 Michigan. It will be Senior Recognition Day, so be sure to come out and support the seven Nittany Lion seniors in their final regular season home game. The Nittany Lions then head to Michigan State for the Big Ten Tournament, which begins on Nov. 5. Check back to GoPSUsports.com throughout the week for a complete preview on the showdown with the Spartans.
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