Lady Jeffs Field Hockey Picks Up Two Wins
Issue   |   Tue, 09/11/2012 - 23:29

Field hockey started their season off strong with two victories, the first coming in a convincing 3-1 win over Keene State. Krista Zsitvay ’14 scored twice, and the Lady Jeffs got strong performances across the board in a victory that wasn’t as close as the final score suggests.

The Lady Jeffs controlled every single statistical category, taking 28 shots to the Owls’ four and holding an 18-5 advantage in penalty corners. Amherst goalie Rachel Tannenbaum ’15 had to make just one save on the afternoon, while her counterpart Caitlin Davino-Draper had nine stops and was under constant pressure.

For all the Jeffs’ dominance, Keene State struck first, as Melissa Habelow fired home on a penalty corner. Despite the early deficit, the team stayed calm and continued to play within themselves. “I think we did a good job of collecting ourselves after Keene’s first goal,” Zsitvay said. “We knew that there was plenty of time still left so we kept playing our game, and we ended up with a great outcome.”

The Jeffs’ game shone through just ten minutes later, as Zsitvay beat Davino-Draper to her far post to even things up. The Lord Jeffs went into halftime with nine penalty corners and 14 shots but only one goal to show for their efforts.
That changed 12 minutes into the second half, as the team was rewarded for their dominance when Kerry Fusco ’15 found Madeline Tank ’15, who slotted past Davino-Draper to take the lead.

The second half was a defensive clinic, as the Lord Jeffs buckled down and allowed one more shot over the remaining 50 minutes of play after conceding the early goal, with new starters Camille Youngblood ’15, Emily Burress ’15 and Annie Turnbull ’16 playing the whole game and putting in strong performances. “We just graduated most of our starting defensive squad…and have been working really hard all preseason on defense and defensive strategy, so it was rewarding to see the team do such a good job in our first game on the defensive side of things,” Zsitvay said.

The team’s one scare came late in the second half, when Kalin Billert ’12 found herself bearing down alone on Tannenbaum but lost control of the ball. Zsitvay sealed the game with under ten minutes remaining, getting her own rebound before finishing for the fifth multi-goal game of her career.

On Tuesday, Sept. 11, the Lady Jeffs continued their winning ways with a resounding 8-1 drubbing of cross-town Mt. Holyoke. It was a relatively easy affair all the way for the Amherst squad, as the Jeffs jumped out to an early 5-0 lead and never looked back.

Zsitvay scored twice, but Katie McMahon ’13 provided an even more stellar performance, contributing three goals of her own while, along the way, becoming the program’s all-time leading scorer.

The Lady Jeffs will begin NESCAC play this Saturday when they travel to Maine to face Bates, and the team is ready for what promises to be a tough slate of games.

“[Keene State] was definitely a good tuneup for more challenging NESCAC competition. It is always nice to get any first game nervous jitters out of the way,” Zsitvay said. “I’m really proud of my team for showing in the first game that we have the ability to come back and win a game after being scored on first.”

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