Nittany Lion Field Hockey Looking to Build on Shutout Victory
Sept. 1, 2011
By Cassie Speno, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
The Nittany Lions will look to build off the momentum from Sunday's shutout when they travel to Lock Haven (1-1) on Friday for a 7 p.m. matchup with the Bald Eagles. The Lions host UConn on Sunday at noon for the home opener.
"I can't praise enough the effort and the decision making of our players on the field and the way they really played together as a team on Sunday," said head coach Charlene Morett. "I just thought...wow we are back to where we were a week ago. We were using each other and truly playing together as a team. That was really important to me."
Following each game, the team awards one player "The Shirt of Fallujah" in honor of an American warrior who lost his life on the battlefield. Morett said following Sunday's contest it was too difficult to pick just one player that stood out. In order to win both matches this weekend and continue their success this season, Penn State knows solid team efforts are needed each game.
"We did not feel on Sunday that any one person stood out," said Morett. "They all stood out. So we hope we have that type of effort again consistently game to game."
Even though the Lions shut out the third-ranked team in the country, defense remained the main focus of practice this week.
"We definitely need to improve our individual defense and our pressure defense," said Morett. "As a team we have a tendency of not getting on the right side of the ball and we give the girl with the ball too many options when we should be taking them away."
Lock Haven was handed its first loss of the season when Radford defeated the Bald Eagles, 4-3, on Aug. 27. The team then went on to redeem themselves and handed Longwood a defeat with a final score of 2-1.
Penn State is anxious to play on its home turf for the first time this season when they host the UConn Huskies Sunday. The players traversed campus Tuesday with Code Blue event flyers and schedule cards in order to help boost attendance for Sunday's matchup.
"They are all fired up," said Morett. "Last year we were second in attendance and this year we want to be first. It has been awesome to see the way the students have supported both volleyball and soccer in their first home games. We hope that the students here at Penn State can bring the same energy to field hockey."
Penn State's first home game will come at noon on Sunday. UConn (2-0) had big wins over both Hofstra and Stanford. UConn blasted Hofstra, 7-1, in its season-opener. The Huskies then went on to conquer Stanford 4-2. The Nittany Lions are ready to take on the Huskies this Sunday with home field advantage working in their favor.
Penn State's game on Sep.4 will be a Code Blue Blast event, where students can earn points for attending the event. The top 250 point-earners by the end of the school year will receive guaranteed football ticket purchasing opportunities. The top 10 point earners will receive free football tickets for next year.