On Friday, Sept. 21, at Dedham Field in Boston, Massachusetts, the University of Maine Black Bears faced the Northeastern University Huskies for a thrilling match. It was their eighth consecutive win, with a final score of 9-1 Black Bears.
In keeping with the trend throughout the season, the Black Bears racked up points early in the game with the first goal scored within the first 10 minutes by defensive back Emily Hindle. Despite the mess of combating players, Hindle managed to get the ball into the cage. After several blocks and a penalty corner, the second goal was scored by midfielder Ella Mosky less than 10 minutes after the first.
Despite these early points, the Huskies were ferocious on the turf. For every Black Bear who had the ball, there were two Huskies battling for it, as the Huskies’ defense tightened up after allowing the Black Bears to take a 2-0 lead. Northeastern forward Camille O’Conor drove up the field and scored a goal. The first half of the game finished off with two penalty corners during which the Huskies maintained a strong defense against UMaine’s offense.
At the start of the second period, the Black Bears’ offense exploded, and this time the Huskies were unable to stop it. The third goal was shot by midfielder Libby Riedl, her seventh of the season. At the next penalty corner, midfielder Casey Crowley took a pass from forward Brittany Smith and sent it into the back of the Huskies’ net, making the score 4-1.
The next shot by Riedl was blocked and another close shot by first year defensive back Nina Keur was saved by the Huskies’ goalkeeper Julia Gluyas, whose close range defense had the Black Bears shooting from distance all game long. Despite this, the score was brought to 5-1 by Crowley 50 minutes into the game when she out maneuvered four different defenders and fired it into the net for the goal, her sixth of the season. Crowley’s impressive shot was enough to merit national recognition, as she was on SportsCenter’s Top 10 Plays for the day. During the very next penalty corner, Riedle scored another goal, assisted by Samantha Wagg. With the score at 6-1, yet another goal was scored by midfielder Lydia Gavner by a strong final effort as she was falling. The Black Bears, not afraid of a few scratches and bruises, put up a tough effort and skillfully overpowered the Huskies’ defense.
Keur scored again with an assist by Riedl, who fired the ball into the net while the goal keeper was out of the cage. UMaine’s final goal was scored during the penalty corner initiated by Emily Hindle. Then Riedl scored with the assistance of midfielder Cassandra Mascarenhas, bringing the score to 9-1. They were clearly hungry for more, but the Huskies kept up their valiant defensive effort to the last second and prevented the Black Bears from making it a 10-1 game.
The twitter page for UMaine’s team was filled with shout outs to the top players, with many captivated spectators wondering how Crowley made that incredible shot. Throughout the season Maine has been commended for team spirit and playing for more than just scoring goals. It was apparent on Friday, that extra effort goes a long way.