Field Hockey, Sports

No. 19 Field hockey to face first test in rival No. 10 BC

Junior forward Amanda Cassera scored BU’s only goal in last year’s 2-1 overtime loss to BC. PHOTO BY AMELIA WELLS/DFP FILE PHOTO

Fresh off two straight victories during its road trip to Orono, Maine this past weekend, the No. 19 Boston University field hockey team will take on cross-town rival No. 10 Boston College Friday evening at New Balance Field.

Over Labor Day weekend, the Terriers (3-1) traveled north to face Hofstra University and the University of Maine. Despite falling to the University of Massachusetts Amherst 2-1 the previous weekend, BU shined in Maine, pulling out victories against both the Pride (2-3) and the Black Bears (3-1).

On Saturday against Hofstra, BU took an early lead, scoring four straight goals in the first half.  Junior midfielder and team points-leader Hester van der Laan scored her second goal of the season on a penalty stroke, and totaled four points by the end of the game.  Freshman forward Ally Hammel had an outstanding game as well, finding the back of the net twice for her first two collegiate goals.

Last week’s Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week, van der Laan stood out once again in the second game of the road trip. She scored the decisive overtime goal to give BU its second straight victory, once again on a penalty stroke.

“What’s so great about Hester is that she’s just a tremendous competitor,” said BU coach Sally Starr. “I think that when the game is on the line, particularly yesterday’s game, she was able to come up with a great play and then also to have not only the ability, but the courage to score an excellent penalty stroke when the game was on the line.”

After a stellar weekend, it is safe to say that the Terriers are on track for another successful week, especially with leaders such as junior goalkeeper Cammy Jensen, who has won three of four games this season.

“I think winning games gives you confidence,” Starr said. “I think at this point in time it’s early in the season, so you can learn from losses and you can also learn from wins. There are a lot of things that we need to improve upon to compete against a team like Boston College [(3-1)].”

On the other end of Commonwealth Avenue, the Eagles have also played well to start the 2015 campaign, winning three of their first four games.  Although they dropped their most recent game against No. 9 Northwestern University Sunday, they impressed in their first three contests, recording two consecutive shutouts to begin the season.

Senior AshLeigh Sebia leads the Eagles in both points and goals, with six and three, respectively, followed closely by midfielder Emily McCoy, who has five points.  Senior goalkeeper Leah Settipane owns an imposing save percentage of .826, and was the primary reason behind the Eagles’ two shutouts.

“I know that the team is very focused to [beat BC] this week,” Starr said. “We’re looking forward to the opportunity to play an outstanding Boston College team and make the improvements in the areas that we needed to, particularly transitional defense and being a little bit more disciplined and playing for seventy minutes.”

The Terriers will look to build on their recent success against the Eagles Friday night, and Starr seems to believe that the two recent victories, during which they outscored opponents 8-4, are something to build on going forward.

“We learned a lot this weekend,” Starr said. “We got two wins and I think we learned a lot. I think it will help us be prepared for a very good Boston College team on Friday night.”

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Ranya currently covers field hockey and women’s hockey for the Daily Free Press. As a Biology major at BU, she spends much of her time buried in her Chemistry textbook with the occasional trip to the piano practice room to rehearse her favorite piece, Debussy’s "Claire de Lune." She is an avid ice hockey fan and a proud supporter of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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