SOUTH HADLEY, MA – In their first away game of the season, the Williams College field hockey team had 3 second-half goals to shut out Mount Holyoke College 3-0. In this out of conference match-up, junior, Alex Bennett had two goals for the Ephs to help lift her team past the Lyons.
While neither team was able to score in the first half, there was a lot of back and forth action generating numerous chances. The Ephs actually had a goal disallowed at the midpoint of the half after a scramble in front led to the ball in the back of the cage. An offensive foul was called, waving off the goal, which gave the Lyons some momentum. In the defensive end, the Ephs were unrelenting and impressively kept the Lyons off the board even with the 7 penalty corners that they received. Williams ended the half with 4 shots on goal and 3 penalty corners to the Lyons' 5 shots on goal and 7 penalty corners.
Williams first got on the scoreboard 45:28 into the game with a goal by Alex Bennett. The Ephs carried the ball down the field and into the circle, where a centering pass deflected off of the stick of first year, Isabel Perry. The redirect popped up several feet as it headed towards the cage, but Lyons goalie, Liz DiCesare was there to make the save. The rebound came out to junior Maggie Shilling, who collected the ball in front of the goal and made a short pass to Bennett. Bennett was then able to receive the pass and force a shot through the nearby defensive traffic to make contact with the back of the net.
Less than four minutes later, the Ephs struck again. Off a penalty corner, Hannah Goodrick passed the ball to Bennett, who was positioned at the top of the circle. She gathered the ball then rifled a shot past DiCesare to notch her second goal of the game at 49:12.
The Ephs continued this offensive pressure and were able to score yet again towards the end of the second half. Off of another corner with less than 3 minutes remaining in the game, Goodrick inserted the ball to Alex Bennett. Bennett faked a shot and passed to her left, where teammate, Rachel Brissette collected the ball and fired a shot past the defender running at her. The ball travelled towards the cage and passed DiCesare, but was stopped by defender, Kathryn Rawson before it could cross the goal line. At 67:49, Isabel Perry of the Ephs was able to quickly gather this rebound and place it in the back of the net.
Playing phenomenal defense, the Ephs prevented Mount Holyoke from getting a shot on goal in the second half. The Lyons ended the game with 12 penalty corners and 5 shots on goal compared to the Ephs 13 penalty corners and 16 shots on goal. Margaret Draper had a shut out making 5 saves for Williams and Liz DiCesare had 9 saves for Mount Holyoke in addition to the team's 4 defensive saves.
"This game was a tale of two halves," remarked Williams' head coach Alix Barrale. "We really struggled in the first half to get in a flow. We were hesitating too much, which led to giving up 7 corners. We turned it around the second half with great intensity and were able to finish on offense. Isabel Perry and Maggie Shilling added a needed spark on the offensive line."
The Ephs take the field again this Saturday in a conference game against Colby College at 11am at Williamson Field.