Field hockey snaps No. 5 Stonehill's shutout streak, falls during NE-10 opener

Field hockey snaps No. 5 Stonehill's shutout streak, falls during NE-10 opener

EASTON, Mass. - The Saint Michael's College field hockey team lost to No. 5 Stonehill College, 5-2, on Saturday during each team's Northeast-10 Conference opener in W.B. Mason Stadium. The Purple Knights slipped to 2-3 overall while snapping the hosts' shutout streak at 286:37. The Skyhawks, whose ranking is according to this week's National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) national poll, improved to 4-1. Stonehill has qualified for five of the last seven NCAA Tournaments.

Senior Abby Dusha (Greenwich, N.Y./Greenwich Central School) had a goal and an assist for Saint Michael's, and sophomore Nicole White (Cranston, R.I./Lincoln School) netted the first goal of her career. Senior Abigail Bowie (Readfield, Maine/Kents Hill School) had 10 saves. With 196 career stops, Bowie is closing in on becoming the 12th Purple Knight with 200, and is five shy of joining the program's all-time top 10.

Junior Alexandria Sylvia and sophomore Carly Andersen both scored twice for the Skyhawks, and classmate Kacie Smith had the other goal to go along with two assists. Sophomore Sara Freedman made one save.

Andersen netted the opening goal 32 seconds in, with junior Alexandra Gerew carrying down the right side off the opening faceoff and centering for Andersen. Bowie made stops in the fifth and sixth minutes to keep the deficit at one, but Smith doubled the lead at 15:32 with a breakaway tally. In the 21st minute, Smith sent a one-time pass for Andersen, who netted her second goal and, after Bowie notched stops 37 seconds apart late in the stanza, Sylvia collected a pass in the center of the circle and found the back of the net 27 ticks before halftime.

The Purple Knights had their first sustained scoring threat five minutes into the second half, during which they held a 2-1 scoring edge. After an initial shot by Dusha was blocked in the 41st minute, senior Carolyn Avery (Lexington, Mass./Lexington) followed 23 seconds later with a shot that Freedman stopped. Junior Jackie Matthews (Auburn, Mass./Auburn) pounced on the rebound and sent an attempt wide. At 50:35, Dusha got her team on the board, sending a shot from the right side off a Skyhawk and in to end Stonehill's shutout streak.

Sylvia capped a penalty corner sequence with another tally for the hosts at 57:43, but White responded by converting Dusha's one-time pass to the right post 1:12 later. Bowie made a trio of stops in the closing 4:48 to avert further damage.

Saint Michael's hosts Merrimack College, which qualified for four of the past five NCAA Tournaments, on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m.