On Friday, Sept. 28, the University of Maine field hockey team fell to the University of New Hampshire Wildcats 3-2 after an admirable game. Despite the setback, the Black Bears played well and worked hard.
While the Black Bears played well, they didn’t have the same high point tally that they have maintained throughout the season so far. The Wildcats took the lead early on in the game, and the Black Bears couldn’t quite make up the difference.
The first point of the game was scored by Wildcat forward Katie Audino 13 minutes into the game. An unfamiliar feeling for the Black Bears, being down in the score to start a game for the first time this season didn’t last long.
First-year Nina Keur’s first shot on goal, and first point for the Black Bears, came from a valiant effort. After receiving a pass outside of the circle, she dribbled a few feet and then aimed high, getting past multiple Wildcats and their goalie.
The goal scored by Keur marked her fifth goal of the season, which tied for fourth on the team in scoring. Keur’s point was met with joy from her teammates, as they happily congratulated her on the field after the shot went in.
After one half, the Black Bears were outscored by a point despite outshooting the Wildcats. Their second goal was scored by fourth-year Samantha Wagg, who received a pass from third-year Riley Field and scored her sixth goal of the season, which also happened to be her 30th career goal.
Although fourth-year Libby Riedl didn’t score any goals herself, her hard work resulted in five out of the eleven attempted shots for the Black Bears, leading the team’s offensive effort.
Goalie Mia Borley put in a strong effort for the Black Bears on five Wildcat attempts, making two saves this game for her second loss of the season.
Although the game against the Wildcats didn’t result in high points or even a win, the Black Bears showed how important teamwork is. After every goal, the Black Bears cheered each other on and congratulated each other. The team could be seen supporting each other, running together in a pack before the next play.
After Wagg had scored, an almost instantaneous reaction broke out from her teammates: raised hands, still holding their sticks, pumped into the air. The cheering could be heard across the pitch.
The Black Bears weren’t able to capitalize on multiple penalty corner shots at the end of regulation due to a strong Wildcats defense keeping the game safely out of overtime.
The Black Bears’ next game is Sunday, Oct. 7, at the University of Vermont. The Catamounts current record is 4-6, so a road win for the Black Bears is completely feasible, getting them back on track after back-to-back losses. With a strong, young nucleus of players developing, the Black Bears have a positive outlook on the rest of the season and seasons to come.