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PSU Field Hockey receives ECAC Tournament berth


- Plymouth State University's field hockey team received its fourth consecutive post-season berth Monday when the Panthers were selected to participate in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III New England Tournament.

The Panthers earned the tournament's fourth seed, and will host fifth-seeded Clark University on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. at Arold Field. The winner of Wednesday's first-round game will advance to the semifinals this weekend at the site of the highest remaining seed. The championship game is slated for Sunday afternoon.

The rest of the ECAC Tournament field includes top-seeded Keene State, #2 Springfield, #3 Babson, #6 Wellesley, #7 Endicott and #8 Becker. Mount Holyoke College captured last year's championship.

Plymouth State, led by fourth-year head coach Bonnie Lord, will take a 12-6 overall mark, and an 8-1 home record, into this week's tourney. The Panthers finished 8-2 in Little East Conference games this season but were knocked out of the LEC Tournament by eventual champion Southern Maine in the semifinals, denying PSU its fourth straight conference championship. PSU advanced to the NCAA National Tournament the past three seasons after winning the Little East title.

Clark is making its fourth straight ECAC Tournament appearance and its ninth overall. The Cougars, 11-7 overall, is also advancing to the playoffs for the 10th time in the last 15 years. Clark was eliminated from the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) in the semifinals by eventual champion Springfield. The Cougars were ECAC runner-up in 2000 and 2002.

PSU is also making its ninth ECAC appearance. The Panthers' previous selections came in 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1995, 1996, and 1997. Plymouth State's only ECAC championship occurred in 1987.

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