MT PLEASANT, Mich. – Whitney Frates (Woodstock, Vt.) scored two goals, Kara Connolly (Mohegan Lake, N.Y.) tallied a goal and an assist and Tori Welch (East Hampstead, N.H.) recorded two assists to propel the University of New Hampshire field hockey team to Saturday afternoon's 4-1 non-conference victory against Central Michigan at the CMU Field Hockey Complex.
UNH, which has won three of its last four games, is now 7-3 overall. CMU is 2-5.
"We played strong through the entire game," 20th-year head coach Robin Balducci said. "We needed some of the young guys to step up and do something good, and Tori had a really good game."
It marked the second career multiple-goal game for Frates, who matched her personal bests in both goals and points (four). For Welch, it was the first multiple-assist effort. UNH goalkeeper Katherine Nagengast (Westborough, Mass.) was credited with six saves, including five in the second half.
CMU starting goalie Anastasia Netto played 62 minutes and stopped seven of 11 shots on goal. Carissa Flocken did not face a shot on goal in eight minutes of relief action.
The Wildcats took a 1-0 lead at 24:58 when Kyle Lyons (White River Junction, Vt.) scored on a penalty stroke. Despite sizable advantages in both shots (9-2) and penalty corners (7-0), the 'Cats led by just that one goal margin at halftime.
UNH struck early in the second as Frates, with the assistance of Connolly, increased the advantage to two goals at 37:40.
CMU trimmed the deficit to 2-1 on Erin Dye's goal at 42:43.
UNH reestablished a two-goal lead, 3-1, when Connolly converted a pass from Welch into a goal at 49:03. Welch also set up Frates' second goal of the game – a shot over Dye's head – that extended the advantage to 4-1 at 61:28.
Connolly, Frates and Lyons are now tied for the team lead in goals this season with five.
UNH finished with the edge in both shots (17-10) and corners (12-4).
New Hampshire continues its stretch of five consecutive road games Oct. 1 (5 p.m.) for its America East conference opener against the University of Maine. The Wildcats' next home game is Oct. 6 (7 p.m.) against intrastate rival Dartmouth College.