WestConn sneaks past PSU Field Hockey in LEC contest

WestConn sneaks past PSU Field Hockey in LEC contest

Luscher scores first career goal in setback

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Freshman Mariah Luscher (Holderness, N.H.) notched her first career goal, but the Western Connecticut State University field hockey team snuck past Plymouth State University, 3-2, in a Little East Conference (LEC) game at the New Hampton School on Saturday morning.

            WestConn senior Allie Noteware (New Milford, Conn.) gave the visitors a lead they would not relinquish when she scored on a penalty stroke early in the second half.

            Prior to the game Plymouth State honored team adoptee Arielle Beaulieu with the unveiling of a banner to celebrate the team's commitment raising awareness for childhood cancer research. Beaulieu, who was adopted by the team in September 2015 through the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, is a cancer survivor.

            With the setback the Panthers drop to 2-4 overall and an even 2-2 in the Little East. Western Connecticut moves to 5-3 (3-1 LEC).


            The Basics:

            Plymouth State 2, Western Connecticut 3


            Plymouth State 2-4, 2-2 LEC

            Western Connecticut 5-3, 3-1 LEC


            How it Happened:

            * WestConn took a first half lead in the 8th minute after a goal off a penalty corner. Junior Morgan Matthews (Bethel, Conn.) fired a shot from the left side that was deflected to classmate Jacalyn Doerwald (Washington Depot, Conn.). Doerwald settled and pushed a backhanded shot to the far post for her second goal of the year.

            * The Panthers tied the game in the 25th minute. Junior Maddie Kabasakalian (Kent, Conn.) ripped a shot off the Panthers' first penalty corner of the day, WestConn sophomore goalkeeper Neve Manion (Newington, Conn.) made a kick save but the ball ended up on the stick of senior Patty Newhard (South Dennis, Mass.). Luscher redirected Newhard's shot to even the game at one-apiece.

            * PSU leapfrogged in front when junior Kaihley Rafferty (Salem, Conn.) scored her second goal of the season less than three minutes later.

            * The Colonials evened the score in the 32nd minute off another penalty corner. Noteware pushed a shot from the top of the left side of the circle to the front of the net and junior Melissa Krim (South Easton, Mass.) was there to redirect it into the goal.

            * WCSU took the lead for good less than four minutes into the second half. Noteware was awarded a penalty stroke and her shot to the right post was just out of reach of PSU sophomore goalkeeper Jess Distler (Brookfield, N.H.).

            * PSU's best chance to tie came with 27 minute remaining. The Panthers forced a turnover deep in WestConn territory, leading to a quick breakout, but the Colonials' defense recovered to thwart the attempt.


            Inside the Numbers:

            * Distler made five saves for the Panthers, but dropped to 2-4 on the year, while Manion made four stops to improve to 3-1.

            * All five of Distler's saves came in the second half, when the Colonials outshot PSU by an 11-1 margin.

            * Entering today's action PSU owned a 13-1 record against Western Connecticut. WestConn's last win over the Panthers came during the 2008 season.


            Straight from the Coach's Mouth:

            "It means a great deal to celebrate Arielle today," said head coach Bonnie Lord. "We understand what children are going through and that there needs to be more focus and money put toward pediatric cancer research. For us to come out and remind people of what we've done today is what's really important."


            Up Next:

            * The Panthers visit the newest LEC member, Castleton, for a league game on Tuesday (Sept. 25) at 7:00 p.m.

            * WestConn hosts league-rival Keene State in a key LEC contest on Tuesday (Sept. 25), starting at 6:00 p.m.


The Plymouth State and WestConn field hockey teams and coaches with Arielle Beaulieu (right of banner)



– 30 –