October 13, 2013

Compagna, Field Hockey Strike First But No.3 Syracuse Rallies For 3-1 Win

SYRACUSE, N.Y.  – Emma Compagna (Canton, Mass.) gave the University of New Hampshire field hockey team a 1-0 lead, but third-ranked Syracuse University rallied to score three second-half goals to record a 3-1 victory Sunday afternoon at Coyne Stadium. 

UNH is now 7-6 overall while Syracuse improved to 12-1.

Compagna, who hadn't recorded a point her first 31 career games, scored a goal for the second time in as many games. Meg Flatley (Townsend, Mass.), who scored Friday's game-winning overtime goal vs. the University of Maine, tallied an assist. UNH goalie Carlie Tarbell (Wakefield, Mass.) finished with 10 saves while both Megan Bozek (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.) and Maegan Grew (Hampton Falls, N.H.) were credited with a defensive save. 

The Orange was led offensively by Emma Russell (two goals) and Karlee Farr (1g). Jess Jecko made six of her eight saves in the first half.

"We played a phenomenal first half and had several opportunities," 23rd-year head coach Robin Balducci said. "And, them being the No. 3 team in the country, they made adjustments. What I did like from us is that we responded, got good shots and pressure." 

After Tarbell denied Leonie Geyer on a penalty corner at 9:24, UNH immediately responded with pressure but Jecko turned aside Flatley and then Kellie Joyce (South Pomfret, Vt.).

Jecko once again kept the game scoreless at 12:10 with another save against Flatley, but the UNH sophomore forward corralled the rebound and slipped a pass to Compagna for the goal and 1-0 lead at 12:21. 

The Wildcats continued to pressure, as moments later Flatley fired a shot wide of the cage. The 'Cats generated a penalty corner in the 15th minute and that yielded a shot off Bozek's stick that was stopped by Jecko. UNH was awarded another corner within a minute and this time Joyce's bid was turned aside by Jecko.

Syracuse earned four consecutive corners in a two-minute span. On the initial corner, Tarbell once again thwarted Geyer at 28:33. Laura Hahnefeldt's shot on the next corner was blocked, and then her next shot was stopped by Tarbell. On the last of the series of corners, Alyssa Manley's shot was off target. 

The Orange generated another corner with two minutes remaining in the first half, but Geyer's shot was blocked by a defender. Moments later, Serra Degnan struck a shot wide.

At the half, Syracuse had the edge in both shots (10-8) and corners (6-3) but the Wildcats had the advantage on the scoreboard (1-0). 

The home team opened the second half with a flurry of shots. Tarbell made the save on all four shots, however, to protect the one-goal lead.

Syracuse quickly turned a one-goal deficit into a one-goal advantage with tallies 49 seconds apart by Russell at 46:59 and Farr at 47:48. 

UNH called its timeout at that point and generated a corner in the 51st minute that produced a Casey Pohlmeyer (Millersville, Md.) shot that had to be stopped by Jecko.

The Orange's pressure led to a corner in the 63rd minute and this time Bozek's defensive save kept the 'Cats within 2-1. SU extended the advantage to 3-1 at 65:06 when Russell scored off a rebound; Tarbell had made the initial save against Lauren Brooks. 

The Wildcats, who trailed late against both the University of Massachusetts and Maine but rallied to win both games in overtime, responded with offensive pressure and a corner one minute later but Bozek's bid was stopped by Jecko.

The 'Cats earned another corner with two minutes remaining, but Pohlmeyer struck a shot wide. Syracuse advanced the ball to the other end of the field and Grew's defensive save denied Adrian Chambers' opportunity to score. Tarbell once again stonewalled Geyer on a corner in the closing seconds. 

SU finished with the advantage in both shots (21-11) and corners (9-6).

New Hampshire returns to action Oct. 18 (3 p.m.) at the University at Albany. The Wildcats' next home game is Oct. 20 (2 p.m.) vs. Bucknell University.

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