Amherst’s first loss of the season came at the sticks of local rival Mt. Holyoke, which entered the game with a record of 6-2. The Jeffs lost by a score of 3-1. The host Lyons jumped out quickly, taking control of the game and dominating offensively. Mt. Holyoke scored their first goal less than four minutes into the game with a goal from Katie Marquis. Marquis then buried a second goal off of a pass from Megan Entwistle. Quickly, the Lyons had amassed two goals and were playing confidently with a comfortable lead.
Going into the second half, the Jeffs were still scoreless and looking to get back into the game. The Jeffs had their fair share of opportunities and controlled much of the game, besting the Lyons in both shots, nine to seven, and penalty corners, 11 to four. In terms of goalie match ups, Cosentino had five saves for the Jeffs, while her rival at the other end of the field, Meg Barrow, had seven saves in her winning effort.
The Jeffs simply could not seem to find the back of the net. Co-captain Christine Ryan ’04 pulled Amherst within one goal early in the second half when she netted an unassisted goal with about 12 minutes remaining in regulation. Unfortunately, with a little over a minute left, Mt. Holyoke’s Liz Hughes fed a pass to the skilled Marquis who scored yet another goal, completing the hat trick and sealing the fate of the Amherst squad.
“Mt. Holyoke has always been a team that gives us a hard game,” said Ryan. “We played well and had many scoring opportunities, but the game just didn’t go in our favor. Our team showed tremendous heart even though we were down, and we played hard until the end.”
Although the game was disappointing for Amherst, Mt. Holyoke is not a member of the NESCAC, and thus Amherst remained unbeaten in league play going into last Saturday’s game against undefeated Middlebury College.
Middlebury’s field hockey team is off to its best start in school history and certainly proved to be a team to be reckoned with last Saturday. The Jeffs lost on their home turf by a score of 3-2 in a match that was rain-soaked by its conclusion. The game, by its end, proved to be well-matched. Amherst certainly had chances; they moved the ball well and lost a contest that could have gone either way. Amherst managed 11 shots compared to Middlebury’s seven and had nine penalty corners compared to Middlebury’s three. Middlebury jumped out to an early lead thanks to an unassisted score by Allison Smith. Amherst was able to take a lead into halftime however thanks to a pair of goals from Rachel Carr-Harris ’07, the second of which was assisted by Ryan.
Considering the intensity of play, however, the contest looked like it could go either way. The Jeffs were playing strong field hockey, yet the game simply did not go Amherst’s way. Smith tied up the game with her second tally of the match, with 29:03 remaining, giving the contest a new intensity. As rain began to fall, Middlebury forward Char Glessner tapped in the unassisted game-winner in a scramble in front of Cosentino’s net. The goal was netted with about 12 minutes left in regulation, and despite a few very close chances, the Jeffs were not able to score the equalizer to send the game into extra minutes. “Our team is very strong and has a good attitude coming off these losses,” said senior co-captain Molly Jacobs.
The Jeffs are looking to get back on track with a non-league matchup against Keene State College next Thursday. The past week certainly was not one of Amherst’s best, but there is plenty of field hockey left to play and the Jeffs are 3-1 in NESCAC play, good for third place in the conference. In addition, they are currently ranked 17th in the nation.