The No. 20 Boston University field hockey team fell to Northeastern University, 2-1, in an intense game Friday night at New Balance field.
The Terriers (4-4, 1-0 Patriot League) were looking to solidify their national ranking and continue their two-game win streak over the Huskies (8-2), who had won six straight games.
In the first half, the Terrier’s defense fought hard, as much of the game was played at the midfield. Neither team had much of an advantage in shots, leaving the score 0-0 at the end of the first half. Senior goalkeeper Valentine Cerda Eimbcke made three saves from Northeastern’s penalty corners to keep BU in the game for the second half.
“In the first half of the first half, we were just trying to get settled into the game a little bit. [Northeastern] really used more of a fall-away type press rather than an aggressive press, so we were hitting a lot of balls to them,” said BU coach Sally Starr. “In the second half of the first half, we really started recognizing what was in front of us and making better decisions on the ball, so I was actually really pleased with our play coming into half time.
“I thought we had solved what type of press they were using and were really starting to play some good hockey.”
The Terriers started out the second half strong, recording a rebound goal in the 46th minute of the game from sophomore forward/midfielder Taylor Blood. Blood scored the second goal of her college career, her first coming at the end of the second half of BU’s match against Yale University on Sept. 21, which sent the game into overtime, eventually leading to a win.
However, after the goal, things took a turn for the worst. Four minutes after the score, sophomore midfielder Hester van der Laan received a green card, which gave the Huskies a chance to capitalize in the 53rd minute, as sophomore Natalie Stewart beat Terrier goaltender Eimbcke on a pass from junior Vanessa Pryor, tying the game 1-1. Shortly after the goal, junior midfielder/forward Sofi Laurito and van der Laan received yellow cards.
“We definitely lost our composure in the second half. We allowed the officiating to take the game away from us. You have to make adjustments in the game to how the officiating is being called,” Starr said. “We stopped playing smart. There are things that we definitely talked about doing in halftime that they didn’t make the adjustments on, and we need to be more disciplined in games like this.”
After receiving a penalty stroke in the 60th minute, sophomore Jessica Unger scored, allowing Northeastern to take a 2-1 lead late in the second half. Despite receiving three penalty corner opportunities toward the end of the second half, the Terriers were unable to capitalize on their chances, losing the game 2-1.
“If anything, we were just trying too hard,” Starr said. “We talk about playing with our heads and our hearts, but in this game, we just played with our hearts, and we didn’t play with our heads at all.
“I knew this was going to be a close game. Northeastern is a good team. We let this game get away from us, and we beat ourselves more than Northeastern beat us tonight. That’s it in a nutshell.”