No. 17 Field Hockey Closes Home Slate With Key A-10 Games Vs. Saint Joe's & Temple This Weekend
Oct. 23, 2008
AMHERST, Mass. - The 17th-ranked UMass Minutewomen (12-3, 4-0 A-10) look to remain perfect in Atlantic 10 play when they host Saint Joseph's (11-5, 3-1 A-10) in a matchup of the first and tied-for-second place teams in the conference on Friday at Garber Field at 3 p.m. It is also a rematch of last season's A-10 Championship game, won by UMass, 2-1. The Minutewomen close the weekend, and the home portion of their schedule, on Sunday at noon with the team tied with Saint Joe's for second in the standings, Temple (7-10, 3-1 A-10). Sunday will also be Senior Day at Garber Field, with a ceremony honoring Katelyn Orlando, Erin Parker, and Mary Shea before the game.
The 17th-ranked Minutewomen have won five-straight games and nine of their last 10.
UMass is looking to keep it's A-10 unbeaten streak alive. The Minutewomen have won 10-straight games over conference opponents, a stretch of over a year.
WomensFieldHockey.com currently has the Minutewomen ranked 17th as well in their latest poll.
Last Time Out
Cher King and Alesha Widdall led UMass to a 2-0 victory over La Salle last Friday afternoon at Hank DeVincent Field. King assisted on the Minutewomen's two goals, scored by Katie Kelly and Mary Shea, while Widdall made six saves to earn the shutout in goal.
UMass continued its winning ways on Sunday afternoon, defeating West Chester, 4-1, at Vonny Gros Field for the Minutewomen's fifth-straight victory and ninth in their last 10 games. Katelyn Orlando led the offense once again, scoring twice. Katie Kelly and Cher King added goals as well. Alesha Widdall earned the victory in goal, running the freshman's record to 9-3. The defending Atlantic 10 champions now sit alone in first place in the conference standings at 4-0 at clinched a berth in the A-10 Tournament.
King Wins UMass Weekly Honor
After coming back from the Pan Am Juniors in Mexico City, where she captained the Barbados team and scored two goals, King rejoined her UMass teammates and had her best weekend of the season, tallying a goal and three assists.
Widdall Wears Gold
Widdall followed that up by earning two victories last weekend, at La Salle and West Chester, including her fourth shutout, to take home A-10 Rookie of the Week honors.
Sunday's game will be the 39th meeting between UMass and Temple in a series that started in 1978. UMass leads the series, 28-10, but the Owls have won two-straight over the Minutewomen. The Minutewomen will be looking to avenge their lone conference loss from a year ago.
Last season, on Oct. 12, Temple's Kasey Ruth scored her second goal of the game with 2:39 left to break a 1-1 tie and give the Owls a 2-1 victory over UMass at Geasey Field. The Minutewomen's lone goal came from Katie Kelly and was assisted by Cher King.
UMass' last win over the Owls was on Nov. 4, 2005 in the A-10 semifinals at Temple's Geasey Field. Erin Parker, then a freshman, scored the game-winning goal with 4:11 left in overtime to give the Minutewomen a 2-1 win and send them to the Championship game. Mary Shea added a goal and an assist as the freshmen led the UMass attack.
Scouting Saint Joseph's
Junior forward, Kellie Walter, leads the team in goals and assists, combining for a total of 27 points. She leads the forward attack, with the help of seniors Marisa Pizza and Krista Bordogna who respectively have eight and six goals.
Head coach, Michelle Finegan, is in her 12th season at St. Joe's. As the winningest coach in Hawks' history, she has taken the team to seven consecutive A-10 appearances, including back-to-back berths in the championship game.
The Owls' attack is powered by junior Charise Young, with eight goals and seven assists, leading the team in both categories. Joining her on attack are juniors Dannah Brehm (5g, 5a) and Mandi Ruth (5g), along with senior Liz Watto (6g, 1a).
Goalkeeper Erin Hanshue has been the leader of the defense, allowing 2.60 goals per game and saving 65 percent of the shots she sees.
The Owls are coached by Wake Forest alum, Amanda Janney. Just in her fourth season with the team, she has led the Owls to three consecutive Atlantic 10 Tournaments and has compiled a 46-30 overall record.
Back On Top
Katelyn Orlando leads the conference in scoring (11 goals) and is tied for second in points (23). She combines with Katie Kelly (8 goals) and Jill Powers (7 goals) to give UMass three of the top eight scorers.
Erin Parker is tied for the A-10 lead in assists (7) while Mary Shea is fourth (6). Makaela Potts leads the A-10 in shots (50). Alesha Widdall has dominated in goal with top marks in save % (.772), GAA (1.13), and shutouts (4).
UMass closes the regular season with a non-conference game on the road at Providence on Sat., Nov. 1 at 1 p.m. From there it will be off to Pennsylvania and the Temple campus for the Atlantic 10 Championship on Nov. 7-8.
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