By RYAN FARRAR
The University of Mary Washington’s women’s field hockey team took on the Virginia Wesleyan College Marlins this past Sunday, Oct. 9, with home field advantage working for the Eagles. The No. 18 Mary Washington squad cruised past the Marlins 8-1, and improved their season record to 11-3 overall.
“I am really excited at how well we are doing,” junior Florence George said. “Of course there is always room for improvement and we are going to keep working hard, but I am proud of my team and what we have accomplished so far.”
The game started out very slowly, with only three total goals scored in the first half. UMW held a slight 2-1 halftime lead thanks to a pair of goals by freshman Courtney Rampey. Rampey’s first goal came in the 19th minute off an assist from senior Morgan Jones, and her second score was set up by senior Kaitlyn Ripley and came in the 23rd minute.
In the second half, the Eagles were able to pull away as the offense exploded for six unanswered goals. Jones found the back of the net twice after intermission and also tallied another assist, giving her a game-high four points.
“I love the game and as it is my senior year I have nothing to lose,” Jones said. “I want to take the team to its highest potential. Sure I have scored goals, but it truly is a team game and without my great teammates around me my personal impact wouldn’t be nearly as large.”
Junior Lisa Charney, Ripley, and sophomore Brenna Hill scored the other goals for Mary Washington as the Eagles coasted to a blowout win. The Eagles outshot the Marlins 20-5, and UMW also held a distinct advantage in penalty corners, 14-2.
“In games against tough teams like Virginia Wesleyan, all you can do as a team is keep pushing every play as hard as you can and not let up,” Jones said. “That is what we did and it worked out for us today. We hope to keep this positive momentum going for the remainder of the season and into the postseason.”
According to George, team unity has been crucial to the field hockey team this season.
“The chemistry we have established as a team this year is so important to playing as a unit and being successful that I couldn’t wish for a better team,” George said. “If we can keep up our cohesiveness into the conference tournament, I have no doubt that we can find success going deep into the NCAA tournament.”
The Eagles took on Washington College this past Tuesday, Oct. 11, and fell to the Shorewomen 5-3. Sophomore Caitlin Baker led UMW with two second half goals in the loss.
Mary Washington will look to rebound on Saturday, Oct. 15, when they travel to Maryland for a Capital Athletic conference matchup against Frostburg State University.