FIELD HOCKEY: Eagles Bounce Back In Close Contest With Rival Terriers
Published: Sunday, September 15, 2013
Updated: Sunday, September 15, 2013 23:09
In a matchup of crosstown rivals, the Boston College field hockey team looked to reenergize its strong start to 2013 at Boston University.
Two closely ranked teams kept each other in check for most of Friday night’s defensive grudge match, but timely offense late in regulation propelled the Eagles to a pivotal 1-0 victory.
Head coach Ainslee Lamb’s BC squad came out firing on offense with an aggressive attack against the Terrier defensive unit. Through the first 35 minutes of play, the Eagles outshot their opponent by a 10-4 margin and boasted five more attempts from the penalty corner.
Yet their valiant efforts to dominate possession of the ball and elude BU goalie Valentina Cerda Eimbcke were fruitless early on, as both teams entered the half in a scoreless deadlock.
Entering play on Friday with an average output of over four goals per game over a 4-1 start, the Eagles found themselves cornered into an unfamiliar situation thanks to Cerda Eimbcke’s eight first-half saves.
As consistent as the opposing goalkeeper looked between the pipes, BC goalie Leah Settipane matched her play for play. The sophomore was a rock for the Eagles throughout the evening, tallying a total of eight saves to continue her string of impressive starts.
While the squad’s offense was stalled and time began to tick away, Settipane took control of the game in goal. BU looked poised to break through on the scoreboard late in the second frame, corralling the ball in the corner with its sights set on BC’s goal.
The Terrier attack fired a volley of consecutive shots straight toward Settipane, but the sophomore keeper refused to yield in the midst of a classic defensive struggle. Back-to-back saves crushed BU’s corner chance and tipped the momentum in BC’s favor.
With new life breathed into their hopes for a hard-fought road win, the Eagles mounted another attack on the opposing defense. On one of their 11 corner chances on the night, they finally lit up the scoreboard in the 61st minute of regulation.
Junior Emma Plasteras received teammate Romme Stiekema’s pass from atop the circle. Ready to fire from her position at the left post, Plasteras sent a shot screaming toward BU’s goal. The ball ricocheted off of Cerda Eimbcke and found its way into the net for the game’s first score and Plasteras’s team-leading sixth of the season.
The Eagles gained a 1-0 lead they never relinquished.
When the dust settled and the final horn sounded, Settipane walked away with her first shutout in 2013, Lamb had her 101st victory at BC’s helm, and the Eagles tallied their fifth win in six games.
BC soon enters the heart of its season and ACC competition, looking to keep pace with the four undefeated teams that stand atop the conference standings. A legitimate run at a conference title will demand sound play over the coming weeks, including against perfect ACC rival Syracuse on Friday afternoon.
Yet a lethal combination of timely scoring and unrelenting goaltending now puts the Eagles in a position to build on Friday night’s win with another dominant run.