No. 8 Field Hockey Travels to Temple, Hosts Cornell This Weekend
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - As the No. 8 Penn State field hockey team buckles down for a busy week of traveling, the Nittany Lions prepare to visit Temple University on Saturday, Sept. 8, for a 1 p.m. matchup. The squad will then return home on Sunday, Sept. 9, for a 2 p.m. game against Cornell University. After a tough 3-2 overtime loss to No. 4 Princeton on Thursday night, the Lions move to 3-2 on the season.
Last time out, senior Kelsey Amy (Sweet Valley, Pa.) scored her fifth goal of the season after a gritty performance against the Tigers. Coming off of a corner, she was aided by sophomore Laura Gebhart (Mount Joy, Pa.), who racked up her fourth assist in five games. Trailing 2-1 in the second period, junior Annie Abdo (Langhorne, Pa.) sent a lunging pass across the net to Katie Andrews (Lancaster, Pa.). The sophomore then scored her first career goal on her first career shot to tie the game. Goalkeeper Ayla Halus (Hershey, Pa.) made eight saves and fended off four penalty corners. The fifth-year senior now has 26 saves and a .703 save percentage. Between 11 Lions, Penn State currently boasts 78 points.
Temple began the 2012 season with a highly competitive schedule, falling 4-3 in overtime against No. 8 Virginia and 2-1 to No. 5 Duke. However, the Owls jumped back, defeating Rutgers in overtime and most recently downing Monmouth 3-2. Against the Hawks, Amber Youtz scored her fourth goal of the season, while Lauren Hunt tallied her third for her seventh point. Youtz leads the squad with 11 overall points with three assists. Alyssa Delp scored the game-winner in the Monmouth contest, recording her first goal of the season. Nicole Kroener also adds depth to Temple's offense, with two goals for four points on the year. Backstopping the Owls, goalkeeper Lizzy Millen made seven saves against the Hawks, bringing her season total to 19 for a .655 save percentage.
This is the 39th meeting between the Nittany Lions and the Owls, with Penn State leading the all-time series with a 30-6-2 record. Last season, the Lions shut out Temple 4-0 on Sept. 22 at home.
Penn State will face Cornell University for the first time in program history on Sunday, hosting the Big Red at the Field Hockey Complex.
The Big Red have had a difficult start to the 2012 season, dropping two one-goal games against Lock Haven and Bucknell, and facing a tough loss to No. 1 North Carolina. With conference play to begin after the matchup against the Nittany Lions, Cornell looks to improve on their 7-10 overall record from the 2011 season. The squad currently has two players, Brittany Thompson and Hannah Belleza, leading the team with three points. Belleza scored in the season-opener against Lock Haven, tying the game and forcing overtime, while Thompson scored the lone goal against the Tar Heels. Kat Dipastina scored in Cornell's last contest against Bucknell, giving her two points on the season. The Big Red have three sets of sisters on the team, including a pair of twins: Ann and Kat Dipastina, Keelin and Mallory Bannon, and Paige and Shelby Mollineaux.
Penn State will take on three opponents next week, including Lock Haven (Sept. 12), Lehigh (Sept. 14) and Monmouth (Sept. 15). Big Ten competition draws closer and closer, with the Lions taking on Indiana on Sept. 21 for a Big Ten Network televised contest.
Check back at GoPSUSports.com for continued updates during the 2012 field hockey season. Find us on Twitter at twitter.com/PennStateFH and find us on Facebook at facebook.com/pennstatefieldhockey.