AMHERST, Mass. -
The #18 UMass field hockey team wraps up 2012 regular season competition with a pair of Atlantic 10 home games against Temple and Lock Haven. The Minutewomen will meet the Owls on Friday, Oct. 26 at 3 p.m. before facing the Lady Eagles for Senior Day competition on Sunday, Oct. 28 at 1 p.m. Admission to both contests is free to all.
Series With Temple
Temple enters the contest with UMass sporting an 11-7 overall record and 4-1 mark in conference play. The Minutewomen have found consistent success against the Owls in the history of both programs, sporting a 32-12-0 overall record against Temple. The Owls earned a 4-0 win over UMass in the last meeting, doing so in the semifinals of the 2011 Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament while the Minutewomen secured a 2-1 overtime victory at Temple during the 2011 regular season.
Amber Youtz leads the Owls offense with 50 points on 20 goals and 10 assists this season. Nicole Kroener follows with 22 points on seven goals and eight assists while Lauren Hunt owns eight tallies and five helpers for 21 points. Overall, Temple has totaled 55 goals and 39 assists for 149 points on 261 shots and 170 on-target attempts.
Lizzy Millen owns the starting role through 18 games, playing 1,115 of a possible 1,276 minutes in the cage. Millen has allowed 46 goals for a 2.89 GAA while stopping 87 shots to earn a .654 save percentage. Millen has tallied each of the 18 decisions while Haley Mitchell rounds out the playing time as Millen's backup.
Series With The Lady Eagles
Lock Haven and UMass have met on three occasions, with the Minutewomen earning all three victories. Last season, UMass downed the Lady Eagles, 2-1 to open Atlantic 10 play, with goals from Kara Charochak and Kate Heineman propelling the squad to victory.
Lock Haven enters the weekend with an 11-7 overall record and 2-3 mark in conference competition. Kelly Harsh leads the squad with 19 points on seven goals and five assists while Nakira Downes follows closely behind with four goals and 10 assists for 18 points. Also reaching double-figures for the squad are Stephanie Ebersole (15), Nikki Weaknecht (15) and Taylor Kennedy (10). Overall, the Lady Eagles have outscored opponents, 37-32 while recording more points, 102-90 and shots, 215-208.
A pair of goalies have split time in net for Lock Haven in Elaina White and Kelsey Moll. White is 4-3 on the year with 10 goals allowed in 525 minutes for a 1.33 goals against average with 44 stops for an .815 save percentage. Moll has played 779 minutes over 12 games, earning a 1.98 goals against average and .741 save percentage, totaling a 7-4 record with one shutout. As a tandem, White and Moll own a 1.72 GAA and 773 save percentage over 1,304:19 in the cage for the Lady Eagles.
UMass Runs Undefeated Streak To Five
With a pair of victories on the road at La Salle and Saint Joseph's, the UMass field hockey squad continued its recent run of success, moving its winning streak to five in the process.
Against La Salle, senior forward Nicole Cordero provided two goals while senior forward Kate Heineman and freshman midfielder Noralie Weusthuis added a tally. Heineman netted her first goal of the season - and the eventual game-winner - in the 30th minute to push UMass ahead, 1-0. The senior from Ellicott, Md., sent home a loose ball after Weusthuis fired an on-target attempt at La Salle goalkeeper Lisa Shaffer.
When facing the Hawks two days later, five UMass field hockey seniors led the Minutewomen to a 5-1 victory at Saint Joseph's Ellen Ryan Field on Sunday afternoon. Senior defenders Callie Sweigart and Thando Zono and classmates Cordero, Heineman and Kim Young directed the UMass offense while combining for three goals and five assists on the day. Freshman midfielder Allie Sabia and redshirt-sophomore midfielder Marisa Dunn added their first collegiate tallies during competition against the Hawks.
Trio Of Minutewomen Honored For Team's Recent Successes
After the UMass field hockey team tallied a pair of wins on the road at La Salle and Saint Joseph's three Minutewomen were singled out to recognize the recent success of the squad. Senior forward Nicole Cordero totaled Atlantic 10 Player of the Week while freshman goalkeeper Sam Carlino received the rookie laurel from the conference and senior defender Thando Zono was named co-UMass Athlete of the Week on Monday.
Cordero has supplied the Minutewomen with an offensive spark throughout the season and has heightened her play since conference competition began. After three goals and an assist over two games during the previous weekend, Cordero now owns 13 points on six tallies and one helper through five conference games. On the season overall, Cordero leads UMass with 12 goals and an assist for 25 points, the fourth-highest total in the Atlantic 10.
Carlino netted her first weekly honor with a strong showing against the Explorers and Hawks, only allowing two goals in 140 minutes of play while recording nine saves. Carlino has achieved similar dominance to Cordero's when facing A-10 opposition, owning a 0.63 goals against average and .870 save percentage while only allowing three goals in more than 330 minutes in net against A-10 foes.
Zono was tabbed the co-UMass Athlete of the Week with swimming and diving's Katie Arnott after Zono helped to lead the Minutewomen through another successful A-10 weekend. Zono spearheaded the offensive charge against Saint Joseph's, recording a goal and two assists to improve the senior defender's season points total to 18 on seven goals and four assists.
During UMass' 6-2 win over Saint Louis, senior midfielder Kim Young reached the 50-point plateau for her tenure with the Minutewomen. Young has remained one of the most consistent players for UMass since her arrival in Amherst in 2009, recording at least three goals in each season. Young has a pair of 13-point seasons (2009 & 2011) and owns 19 goals and 15 assists in 80 career games.
This year, Young has turned in her best single-season performance at UMass, owning second on the squad with 21 points on eight goals and five assists. For her overall success on the field and in the classroom, Young has been awarded numerous honors, including First Team A-10 All-Conference (2011), A-10 All-Conference Rookie Team (2009) and NFHCA National Academic Squad and Atlantic 10 Academic All-Conference (2011).
Following Closely Behind
Shortly after Kim Young reached the 50-point plateau against Saint Louis, senior forward Nicole Cordero flourished against Saint Louis and VCU, earning 10 points on three goals and an assist. With her recent influx in production, Cordero now owns 45 career points on 20 goals and five assists. In tandem with Young, Cordero is having a banner season in her final year with the squad, leading the team with 25 points on 12 goals and an assist.
Undefeated Week Nets Zono, Allymohamed Laurels
With three wins in as many games, senior defender Thando Zono and sophomore defender Lauren Allymohamed were honored for their parts in helping secure each win. Zono tallied Atlantic 10 Co-Athlete of the Week and Allymohamed earned UMass Athlete of the Week after the duo combined for two goals and a pair of assists.
Zono earned the game-winning goal against No. 1 Syracuse before adding her second goal of the weekend against Saint Louis. Allymohamed assisted on the game-winner against the Orange before providing another helper against VCU.
Field Hockey Closes Perfect Week With Wins Over Saint Louis, VCU
After downing No. 1 Syracuse, 2-1 the Minutewomen continues a strong showing at home with wins over Saint Louis, 6-2 and VCU, 3-0 to complete a perfect week at Garber Field. The victories improved UMass to 8-8 overall and 2-1 in Atlantic 10 play.
Against Saint Louis, senior Nicole Cordero paced the offense with her first collegiate hat trick while Thando Zono, Lindsay Bowman and Molly MacDonnell added a mark each. The Minutewomen controlled play from the onset, finishing with a 30-2 advantage in shots while scoring the first four goals.
When UMass faced VCU two days later, the squad produced its first shutout of the season, 3-0 behind strong play from the defense and three saves in the cage by freshman goalkeeper Sam Carlino. Kim Young scored the eventual game-winner on an assist from Nicole Cordero. Callie Sweigart and Alyssa Ineson added insurance goals for UMass, with Ineson's marking the first of her collegiate career.
Minutewomen Upend No. 1 Syracuse, 2-1
In its final non-conference contest of the season, and the most difficult test of the year to-date, the UMass field hockey team defeated No. 1-nationally ranked Syracuse, 2-1 at Garber Field on Thursday afternoon. After falling behind, 1-0 in the 24th minute, the Minutewomen responded with goals from freshman midfielder Noralie Weusthuis and Thando Zono to secure the victory.
Zono provided the decisive goal in the contest during the 63rd minute of play, her fifth tally of the season. Freshman midfielder Allie Sabia controlled possession to begin the attacking run and sent a pass to Zono. After the ball trickled through the legs of a Syracuse defender, Zono ripped a shot into the left side of the cage just inside the post to push UMass ahead, 2-1 at the 62:55 mark.
Zono's goal came slightly more than five minutes after Weusthuis equalized the contest with a re-direction at the 56:16 mark. Sophomore defender Lauren Allymohamed earned her first assist of the season as Allymohamed delivered a perfect pass from outside of the circle to Weusthuis' waiting stick.
With the win, the field hockey team became the first women's athletic program to defeat a No. 1-ranked opponent.
Top-Notch Competition Providing Early Season Tests
Through 18 contests, UMass field hockey has played a ranked foe 11 times, the most among all Atlantic 10 Conference schools. This year, UMass has faced No. 1 Syracuse, No. 3 Connecticut, No. 3 Maryland, No. 7 Northeastern, No. 12 Boston University, No. 15 Ohio State, No. 17 Boston College, No. 18 New Hampshire, No. 21 UAlbany, No. 22 Richmond and No. 24 Maine.
Within the Atlantic 10, the eight-team conference has played 36 games against top-25 opponents combined, with Richmond challenging the second-most (six) while Temple follows with five such games and Saint Joseph's and Saint Louis add four a piece. Lock Haven battled a ranked foe three times while VCU follows with a pair of meetings and VCU has squared off against top-25 competition once a piece.
As a whole, the conference has gone 8-28 against NFHCA Top-25 opposition, with UMass owning five of those victories. Richmond downed No. 19 Williams & Mary and No. 25 American University while Temple fought by No. 15 Drexel to join UMass as the only A-10 teams with wins over top-25 opposition.
70 Minutes Just Isn't Enough
Through 18 games on the 2012 season, the UMass field hockey squad has played into overtime on six occasions, meaning a third of the team's games have required extra playing time to decide. UMass is 3-3 in games that go to overtime, with wins against No. 15 Ohio State, No. 17 Boston College and No. 18 New Hampshire.
Previously, UMass has played six or more overtime games in a season only once, when the Minutewomen had six games need extra minutes during the 2000 campaign, which encompassed 23 contests. Throughout the entire A-10 Conference there have only been 17 overtime contests, with UMass being the only squad to participate in more than three games that required at least one extra period.
Starting Out Strong
Facing a treacherous non-conference schedule that includes 10 teams ranked in the NFHCA Top-25 Preseason Poll, UMass dropped No. 15 Ohio State, No. 17 Boston College and No. 18 New Hampshire to secure three victories over top-25 schools in as many attempts to open the year. Each contest required overtime, with the Minutewomen using the extra period to notch the game-deciding tallies for a trio of 2-1 victories.
Young Named UMass Athlete of the Week
Following a two-goal, one-assist weekend for Kim Young, the senior midfielder took home UMass Athlete of the Week honors. Young provided the game-tying mark at No. 17 Boston College before setting up the game-winner in the contest only 21 seconds into overtime. Young also secured a tally against Dartmouth, and the dangerous attacking player now owns a point in three of four games this year.
When awarded the honor four contests into the 2012 season, Young had already began spearheading the Minutewomen's offensive efforts with seven points on three goals and an assist.
Prince Named Atlantic 10 Player Of The Week
After helping UMass to a pair of wins against ranked opponents, junior Hannah Prince was named Atlantic 10 Field Hockey Player of the Week, the league office announced on Aug. 27.
Prince scored the first two goals of her career, both overtime game-winners, as the Minutewomen defeated No. 18 New Hampshire and No. 15 Ohio State by 2-1 margins on Friday and Saturday in Durham, N.H. She factored in UMass' first goal vs. the Buckeyes, as well, dishing her first career assist.
UMass Downs No. 18 New UNH, No. 15 Ohio State During Opening Weekend
UMass posted a pair of 2-1 overtime wins vs. No. 18 New Hampshire and No. 15 Ohio State last weekend in Durham, N.H. It marked the first two victories over ranked opponents of head coach Carla Tagliente's tenure.
The pair of wins put the Minutewomen out to their first 2-0 beginning to a season since 2000. UMass' last 3-0 start came in 1996 when the squad opened up with four consecutive wins.
In addition to the two game-winners by Prince, seniors Kim Young and Thando Zono also added tallies against UNH and Ohio State, respectively. In goal for UMass, Carlino had three saves vs. the Buckeyes.
Bulk Of Scoring Production Back
UMass returns nine of its 11 players who scored goals last season, including its top-three points producers from 2011 in senior Kim Young, redshirt-senior Callie Sweigart and junior Lindsay Bowman.
The returning Minutewomen were responsible for 65 of the squad's 80 total points last season and 23 of 28 goals. Young led the charge with 13 points on four goals and five assists, en route to all-region and All-Atlantic 10 honors.
Atlantic 10 Predictions
UMass was tabbed second in the 2012 Atlantic 10 preseason poll. Trailing only the defending champion Richmond Spiders, the Minutewomen were picked ahead of Temple, VCU, La Salle, Saint Joseph's, Lock Haven and Saint Louis in voting conducted among the league's eight head coaches.
UMass was the No. 2 seed in last year's A-10 Championships after the Minutewomen tied Richmond for the best regular season record in conference play at 5-1.
Youth In The Cage
UMass will be tasked with replacing four-year starter Alesha Widdall in the cage. Widdall, who was a two-time All-American, a four-year all-region and All-Atlantic 10 honoree in her time with the Minutewomen, was named to the 2012 U.S. Women's National Team this past summer.
Freshman Pennsylvania natives Sam Carlino and Sammy Zeiders will be looking to fill the void. Carlino played club with W.C. Eagles Field Hockey from 2007-2012 and was part of the team that took second at the National Club Championship in 2011. She was an all-area first team standout at Unionville High School. Zeiders was a two-time all-state honoree out of Lower Dauphin High School where she won a state title as a sophomore in 2009-10.