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UMaine field hockey clinches third straight America East regular season title

UMaine field hockey continued their stretch of dominance in the America East conference with a 4-2 win over the Stanford Cardinal at home on Friday. This marked the Black Bears’ seventh victory in-conference during the 2022 season and mathematically clinched the Black Bears’ third straight regular-season title. 

Stanford entered the contest with a 3-3 in-conference record with a couple of razor-thin results including a 1-0 shootout loss to the University of California, Berkeley Golden Bears in their last America East matchup. UMaine came into the game undefeated in the conference at 6-0 and nationally ranked No. 23. 

UMaine certainly knew what was at stake on Friday afternoon as fifth-year forward Sydney Meader scored just nine minutes into the game. Third-year back and leading points-scorer Poppy Lambert was credited with her sixth assist on the season to put the Black Bears up early.

It only took another nine minutes for Stanford to strike back. Early into the second quarter fourth-year forward Lynn Vandersitchele scored unassisted to knot up the contest at one goal apiece. Vandersitchele is Stanford’s second leading points scorer, thanks in part to that goal and another assist she picked up later in the afternoon to total a three-point performance. 

The Black Bears continued the back-and-forth scoring pattern when fifth-year forward Chloe Walton scored her 10th goal of the season just 17 seconds into the second half. Meader was given the assist after a beautiful lead pass into the low circle that gave Walton possession of the ball with only the goalie to beat. Meader’s three-point performance left her with 23 total on the season, good enough for fourth-highest on UMaine’s roster. 

UMaine struck again six minutes later when phenomenal first-year forward Mallory Mackesy scored her 11th goal of the season after scooping up a loose rebound generated by a Walton shot. Mackesy and Walton have been stars on a high-powered offense as they are ranked fifth and sixth respectively in total points in the America East conference.

Stanford kept it interesting when third-year forward Haley Mossamer scored one minute and 23 seconds into the fourth quarter on a rebound from a Vandersitchele shot. Mossamer recorded her team-leading 15th point, which is the 16th-highest individual total in the conference. On the other hand, four Black Bears have a higher points total. 

UMaine quickly put the comeback to bed three minutes later when Lambert scored on a neatly executed penalty corner with assists from fourth-year midfielder Madisyn Hartley and third-year midfielder Tereza Holubcova. This was Hartley’s 16th assist in 2022, which is easily the most in the conference. 

The goal counted as Lambert’s conference-leading 18th of the season. She is scoring at an absolutely ridiculous clip of 1.059 goals per game, the only player in the America East to surpass an average of one goal per game. 

Mia Borely was once again very solid between the pipes, picking up another eight saves to add to her conference-leading total of 91, which is 18 more than the second-highest record. 

With the victory UMaine advanced to an overall record of 13-4. Their final regular season game will be played against UC Davis at home on Oct. 30 for senior day.

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