Field hockey stumbles against No. 4 Shippensburg in DoubleTree Fall Classic opener

Field hockey stumbles against No. 4 Shippensburg in DoubleTree Fall Classic opener

COLCHESTER, Vt. - The Saint Michael's College field hockey team suffered a 6-1 setback in its season opener against No. 4 Shippensburg (Pa.) University on Saturday in the DoubleTree Fall Classic at Duffy Field on Saturday. The Raiders, now 1-0, are ranked by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA). In the afternoon game, Southern Connecticut State University downed Mansfield (Pa.) University, 4-1. This marks the seventh consecutive year the four squads are involved in a season-opening tournament.

Saint Michael's senior Megan Deschaine (Claremont, N.H./Stevens) scored with an assist from classmate Morgan Mazanec (Shelburne, Mass./Mohawk Trail Regional). Junior goalkeeper Abigail Bowie (Readfield, Maine/Kents Hill School) totaled 14 saves in her first career start.

Senior Molly Stuart, junior Cassie Rawa and sophomore Madison Scarr all scored and had an assist, while junior Suzanne Muller, sophomore Emily Barnard and first-year Isabelle Becker chipped in goals for Shippensburg. Senior goalkeeper Taylor Webster turned in eight saves for the win.

In the day's first game, Shippensburg buried four first-half goals as part of its six-goal output. After a blocked shot, junior Katelyn Grazan fed a pass to Rawa, who punched in the game's first tally at 8:45. Muller added a penalty stroke marker at 12:06 before the Raiders accounted for a pair of goals in a 1:19 span to close out the opening half, thanks to scores from Scarr and Barnard, respectively.

Saint Michael's got on the board at 41:58 when Deschaine deposited a shot from the top of the circle off of a penalty corner feed from Mazanec. Shippensburg then rattled off a pair of unanswered goals for the game's final scores. At 50:16, Stuart's shot from the upper left of the circle was tipped in by Becker. Stuart then contributed a goal when her low line-drive shot from the left side found its way past Bowie at 55:24. Webster was tested and stopped six Purple Knight shots during the remainder of the game, including a trio of close-in bids from junior Kate Baltich (Loudonville, N.Y./Shaker).

During the second game, Southern Connecticut senior Colleen Murphy recorded a hat trick with sophomore Emma Farrel also scoring a goal. Senior goalkeeper Audrey Dolloff did not allow a goal three shots in 58:42 before first-year Kelli McCombs played 11:18 of relief. Senior Courtney Wilson netted Mansfield's only goal and junior Laura Lawson collected 13 saves.

The Owls scored all of their goals during a 20-shot first half as Murphy reeled off three consecutive goals in a 13:56 span before Farrel picked up a marker at 25:26. Wilson then broke up the shutout at 68:25 when her long hit from outside the circle trickled over the goal line after a shot mishandle by McCombs.

The Purple Knights square off with Mansfield (Pa.) University tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. during the second day of the DoubleTree Fall Classic. Shippensburg and Southern Connecticut State battle at 11 a.m.