Smith scored her 30th goal of the season in today's win. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Freedman makes three saves to preserve her fifth shutout of the season
RINDGE, N.H. (October 10, 2017) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 9 in this week's Penn Monto/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division II poll, scored a pair of second half goals to secure its eighth-straight win, a 2-0 decision over Franklin Pierce University, in Northeast-10 Conference field hockey action at Sodexo Field this afternoon.
Junior Sara Freedman (Hopkinton, Massachusetts/Hopkinton) preserved her fifth individual shutout, and Stonehill's sixth of the season as a team, with three saves. She is now just two stops shy of becoming only the fourth goalkeeper in program history to reach 300 career saves. Junior All-American Kacie Smith (Norwood, Massachusetts/Norwood) and freshman Taylor Ladue (Westminster, Massachusetts/Oakmont Regional) each netted goals for the Skyhawks.
Senior Meaghan Williams (Salem, New Hampshire/Salem) finished with six saves in the Franklin Pierce cage, including three in a scoreless first half. Stonehill recorded a 13-5 advantage for shots in the contest, including 9-2 in the decisive second half, while posting a 6-2 edge for penalty corners.
Freedman notched her fifth shutout of the season with a three save effort. (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)
Smith broke the scoreless deadlock 6:42 into the second half when she collected the ball at midfield and worked her way past multiple defenders before firing in her NCAA-leading 30th goal of the season from ten yards out. She has now scored in 11-straight games and 12 of 13 games overall this fall to move within four points of Erika Kelly '16's single-season scoring record (78) and eight goals shy of Kelly's program and NE10 single-season goals mark (38). Smith, who continues to lead all levels of NCAA field hockey in goals, assists and points, is within eight points of the NE10's single-season scoring record and ten goals shy of the NCAA Division II record of 40 goals by Bloomsburg (Pa.) University's Jamie Vanartsdalen in 2008.
Ladue doubled the Stonehill lead with an insurance goal just eight minutes later when she knocked in her fifth goal of the year off a pass from the right side by senior Alexandria Sylvia (Brockton, Massachusetts/Brockton) at 49:24. Smith had a chance to add to her goal total when a Franklin Pierce defender prevented a second goal from going in, but Williams knocked away her ensuing penalty stroke attempt with under 15-minutes to play.
Stonehill (10-3, 7-0 NE10), which reappeared in the NFHCA national poll this week after a three week hiatus, returns to action on Saturday, when it visits Southern New Hampshire University for an NE10 matchup at 1 p.m. The Skyhawks return home next Wednesday, October 18, to host No. 10 Merrimack College at W.B. Mason Stadium at 7 p.m. Franklin Pierce (7-6, 4-4 NE10) hosts nationally ranked Pace University on Saturday at 4 p.m.
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