In a game with the rivals from across the river, the Boston University field hockey team came up just short in a 1-0 loss to Harvard University Monday. Battling on New Balance Field, the Terriers (3-12, 1-3 Patriot League) held their own against the No. 13 Crimson (12-1).
Riding new momentum from their recent win against Colgate University, the Terriers were determined to face the Crimson head-on.
“They come out with enthusiasm,” head coach Sally Starr said postgame. “They come out with a desire to get better, to work hard, to stay connected, to stay together, to trust each other and believe in each other.”
Starr said the team made a great effort to combat their tough schedule in games and practice and showed a high competitive level in Monday’s game.
“I really felt that our young players showed a lot of maturity tonight and our older players showed great leadership,” Starr said.
The game was a close matchup, with great defensive stops and saves by both teams. Coming off an impressive game against Colgate, junior goalkeeper Caroline Kelly racked up five saves for the game, keeping the Terriers close.
“She is playing her best hockey that she’s played as a Boston University Terrier,” Starr said.
Harvard pushed hard, hitting long balls and forcing BU to scrabble for a backup plan. The second quarter was powered by the Crimson, as they pulled through with a goal off a penalty stroke. This did not discourage the Terriers, though. Going into halftime, the score was 1-0 Harvard, forcing the Terriers to come back with a different game plan.
Come the second half, the Terriers switched to a more press-focused defense and front-line shift. They kept the Crimson attack at bay with steady defense and tactical, organized offense. Although given several corner attempts, the Terriers fell short on them all, missing opportunities to get on the board.
The Terriers put up a tough fight throughout the third and into the fourth quarter, but the Crimson defense was too strong for the Terriers to break through. They fell short — a 1-0 loss on an unlucky stroke call — which Starr said was “the difference in the game.”
Starr said the team is hopeful, though, as they prepare for a challenging battle, facing the Patriot League’s top-ranked team, the American University Eagles (9-3, 4-0 PL), Saturday.
“Tonight’s game can give us a lot of confidence going into the game against American,” Starr said. “American absolutely is an outstanding team, we played an outstanding team tonight.”